Skip to main content

World record cricket crowd at MCG sees Australia on top

updated 11:23 AM EST, Thu December 26, 2013
It was Boxing Day but these fans had cricket on their mind, not shopping -- 91,092 turned up to watch the fourth Ashes Test in Melbourne between Australia and England. It was the most ever to witness a Test encounter in a single day. It was Boxing Day but these fans had cricket on their mind, not shopping -- 91,092 turned up to watch the fourth Ashes Test in Melbourne between Australia and England. It was the most ever to witness a Test encounter in a single day.
World record crowd at MCG
World record crowd at MCG
A familiar sight
Johnson gets help
Some relief for KP
  • England 226 for six wickets at close of first day at MCG
  • Record crowd of 91,092 watch the action in Melbourne
  • Australia lead series 3-0 and have won back the Ashes
  • Kevin Pietersen 67 not out as England falter again

(CNN) -- Basking in the glory of winning back the fabled Ashes from traditional rivals England, Australia's cricketing fans turned up in world record numbers Boxing Day in Melbourne to see their side continue its domination of the series.

England closed on 226 for six wickets, with only Kevin Pietersen, undefeated on 67, suggesting they might post a challenging first innings total.

Two late wickets with the second new ball for paceman Mitchell Johnson swung the initiative Australia's way to leave the majority of the 91,092 crowd at the MCG celebrating.

Read: Australia win back Ashes with Perth triumph

The attendance broke a previous world best for attendance at a cricket match set 52 years ago in the same vast stadium.

"In years to come Melburnians will remember Boxing Day 2013 as the day their city created sporting history," Cricket Australia's CEO, James Sutherland, told Cricket Australia's website.

Compton on the Ashes
Tendulkar on career, family and future
Sachin Tendulkar: The road to legend
Ashes cricket: Australia vs. England

England's loyal band of cricket supporters -- nicknamed 'The Barmy Army' -- also helped boost the figure, but with their team 3-0 down in the best of five-match series they came more in hope than expectation.

Until Johnson's late first day burst, removing Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow, who had replaced the out-of-form Matt Prior as England's wicketkeeper, the visitors had held their own, although the scoring rate was pedestrian.

Put in to bat by Australia's captain Michael Clarke, England made it to lunch for the loss of his counterpart Alastair Cook to Peter Siddle.

Read: Kallis to retire from Test arena

Cook's opening partner Michael Carberry went after the interval, again failing to capitalize on a solid start to be bowled by Shane Watson for 38.

That brought Pietersen to the wicket and he looked determined to atone for earlier failures in the series, which had led some to question his place in the side.

He enjoyed a slice of luck, hooking a short ball from the excellent Ryan Harris in the direction of substitute fielder Nathan Coulter-Nile, who could only carry the ball over for a six.

On 41, Harris almost had him again, but George Bailey could not hold a sharp chance at midwicket.

Pietersen found support from Joe Root and Ian Bell, but both departed after starts to Harris, both caught behind by Brad Haddin, the Australia wicketkeeper.

Stokes and Bairstow were unable to cope with the 90mph plus pace of Johnson, a key figure in Australia's three earlier wins.

It left Pietersen at the wicket with Tim Bresnan and just the England tailenders to come.

Bell, who starred for England in the summer when they beat Australia 3-0 in a home series, still held hope that Pietersen could lift them into a good position on the second day.

"With Kev not out it's a good sign for us," Bell told Sky Sports.

Read: Trott returns home with stress-related illness

"A lot of us got starts and are disappointed not to get scores. We would have liked a few more runs as well," he admitted as the pattern of the earlier matches continued.

"We need big runs and we've not got them, but if Kev and Bres (Tim Bresnan) can hang around, maybe we will get 300 plus and put some pressure on Australia."

But with Johnson fired up, Australia will look to quickly remove the remaining England batsmen at the start of the second day and post a big score of their own in their bid to achieve a humiliating series whitewash of their oldest rivals.

Meanwhile in other Test match action Thursday, India reached 181 for one wicket on the first day of the second Test against No.1 ranked South Africa in Durban.

Indian batsmen Murali Vijay and Cheteshwar Pujara were sharing an unbeaten century partnership for the second wicket before bad light stopped play.

Part of complete coverage on
updated 6:38 AM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
Click through our gallery of the most dramatic moments from the world of sport.
updated 12:06 PM EDT, Mon July 28, 2014
Whisper it quietly, but after years of foreign domination the prospect of a French winner of the Tour de France is more than just a mere pipe dream.
updated 9:21 AM EDT, Mon July 28, 2014
Seven years ago Steve Way was a 20 per day smoker and weighed a hefty 104 kg, but he led the marathon at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
updated 9:17 AM EDT, Fri July 25, 2014
After just one day of competition, a new sport has emerged at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow: snapping selfies with the Queen.
updated 4:48 PM EDT, Fri July 25, 2014
Inspirational cyclist Joanna Rowsell added another gold to her growing collection in the individual pursuit at the Commonwealth Games.
updated 12:04 AM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
At the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, an actor upstaged the Queen by kissing a male dancer.
updated 8:00 AM EDT, Wed May 7, 2014
Of course not. But former Fulham owner Mohamed Al Fayed seems to think the removal of Michael Jackson's statue was a very "bad" idea.
updated 12:36 PM EDT, Wed May 7, 2014
Second-tier French side Clermont Foot appoint Helena Costa -- the country's first ever professional female coach of a male team.
updated 1:33 PM EDT, Fri April 25, 2014
The All Blacks and their fans are focused on one thing, says Dan Carter: becoming the first rugby nation to win back-to-back World Cups.
updated 9:08 AM EDT, Fri April 4, 2014
The 2002 bomb attacks in Bali had many victims -- including a touring rugby team from Hong Kong.
Photographer Danny Lyon spent three days with Muhammad Ali in 1972 and shares his best photos and memories of the champ.
updated 7:54 AM EST, Tue February 25, 2014
With a growing audience boosted by the drama of ice hockey on show in Sochi at the Winter Olympics, can the sport capitalize on its popularity?
updated 6:25 AM EST, Mon January 20, 2014
Her paintings may sell for thousands of dollars, but she is best known for a modeling shot 50 years ago that helped launch a business empire.