London: The ‘Ashes’ urn will be going to Australia, after all — but only temporarily. England have not won an Ashes series since 15 years, and have already lost the current series.
Australian Prime Minister John Howard is among those who have called for the urn, to be moved from the Lords’ museum to Australia to reflect his country’s dominance.
The urn had been scheduled to be taken to Australia this winter to mark the centenary of the first Ashes series. But those plans were scrapped after experts said the urn was too fragile to make the trip.
Marylebone Cricket Club president Tim Rice on Thursday said the urn will be repaired over the next few months so it can be taken to Australia next winter, during the 2003-2004 season.
It is likely to be displayed in Melbourne and Sydney before being returned to England.
“Speaking for MCC, we are very keen that the Ashes should be displayed in Australia,” said Rice. “I have great sympathy for the view of many of Australia’s cricketing and political intelligentsia. We were hoping to take them out this year, but they are in a very fragile condition. Insurers and British museum experts advised us that they shouldn’t go at the moment. (AP)