by Rodney Hammett, 25 February 2021 (from Bulletin 1 of 2021)
Cricket in a different era
Glebe boys Warren Bardsley and William Albert Oldfield were in the Australian cricket team that would shortly depart for a tour to England. Further details of the Glebe Cricket Club can be found in the 2016-01 issue of the Bulletin; an article by Ian Edwards.
The NSW members of the team left Sydney on the RMS Osterley for Melbourne on Saturday 12 March. Here the Victorian players joined the team for an overland trip to Western Australia where they played a game at Kalgoorlie before a match against a Western Australian team in Perth on 19-22 March. The match had to finish early on the third day so that the team could re-join the Osterley, now at Freemantle with the South Australian members on-board, for their journey to England.
In England, they played test matches on 28 May (Nottingham), 11 June (Lords), 27 June (Leeds), 23 June (Manchester) and 18 August (The Oval). Each game was restricted to three days, as was usual for that time, however, later this became five days as we know it today.
Captained by Warwick Armstrong, Australia won the first three tests and drew the last two, to retain the Ashes. Warren Bardsley featured, making 66 runs in the first test, then 88 and 63 not out in the second test. On their return a match was held in South Africa in September, meaning it was not until 24 December the Victorian and NSW members arrived back in Melbourne by train at Spencer St station, welcomed home by family and a crowd of well-wishers.
Sources: Casino & Kyogle Courier and North Coast Advertiser (Sat 12 Mar 1921, p3); Melbourne Herald (Sat 24 Dec, p1); Wikipedia