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The staggering reality of Australian cricket’s recent success


australia's cricket success, major trophies

2023 has been a brilliant year for Australia’s mens and women’s national teams, each cementing their positions as the two best international outfits in world cricket.

For Australia’s men’s side, they began the 2022-23 cricketing summer in a cloud of controversy, following the departure of the ultra-successful, yet maligned, head coach Justin Langer. 


The contingent of Australian cricketing greats plying their trade as cricketing media commentators were up in arms about the decision to remove Langer from the job. This cloud of noise brought with it criticism about Australia’s team and a clear fracture between the players and sections of the media and fanbase. 

Somehow, Pat Cummins’ side united the divide and went on such a successful run it’s only rivalled by the legendary teams of the late 1990s and early 2000s.

For Australia’s national women’s team, their dominance of women’s cricket saw them venture to England to contest the Ashes and defend their T20 World Cup title, under the tutelage of Shelley Nitschke.

Every major cricket trophy currently held by the Australian men’s team

The Ashes

The big one; the holy grail.

2023 dished up maybe the greatest Ashes series since the infamous 2005 bout. It was meant to be ‘BazBall’s’ greatest show. But Pat Cummins’ men had other ideas. Victory in the first two tests and a draw in the fourth meant the series ended 2-2 and Australia retained — a vastly eventful collection of tests. 

Usman Khawaja starred for the Aussies with the bat, ending as the series’ top scorer, while Mitchell Starc claimed the most wickets (23). Some may wonder what might’ve been, had Nathan Lyon’s calf remained healthy for the final three matches.

But the best part about the 2023 Ashes? Piers Morgan’s incessant whining.

The One Day International World Cup

Arguably Australian cricket’s finest moment. No one expected anything other than Indian victory at the 2023 ODI World Cup. And yet, here we are. 

After losing their first two games Australia’s chances of victory were written off, viewed as about as likely as rain in the Sahara. But some big time performances from Mitch Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Adam Zampa, David Warner, and notably Travis Head in the final, ensured a victory for the ages was secured. 

Bowling excellence had South Africa 4-24 early in the semi-final, all but locking Australia in for a date with India in the final. 

In the final, India struggled, their attacking cricket vice gripped by smart and economic Australian bowling, notably from Pat Cummins. In reply, Travis Head knocked the finest century by an Aussie in an ODI World Cup final, supported by Marnus Labuschange, a man whose selection was only guaranteed late the night before. 

pat cummins, cricket, sport
Pat Cummins has proved the doubters wrong by balancing his brilliant captaincy with his bowling

The World Test Championship

Viewed by many as a precursor to the 2023 Ashes, Australia and India battled this one out at The Oval in England. Centuries from Head and Steve Smith, as well as a handy 48 from Alex Carey, placed Australia in a commanding position after their first innings.

In reply, India’s top four combined for 56 first innings runs, emphatically setting the tone for the rest of the match. They fell 173 runs short, with a second-innings 66 not-out from Alex Carey leaving India with 444 to chase for victory.

They fell 209 runs short. Australia secured the first of its many 2023 victories. And the rest, as they say, is history. 

the ashes, world test championship, bazball
Australia’s World Test Championship victory in 2023.

The Trans-Tasman trophy

Australia versus New Zealand is always hotly contested. It was no different in the summer of 2019-20, when a Kane Williamson-led NZ side last arrived on Australia shores to win the trophy. 

Their adversaries, Tim Paine’s Australia, were recovering from the earth-shattering ball-tampering scandal. Not that you’d know it in this series, which ended 3-0 to the Aussies. 

Marnus Labuschagne, fresh from a breakout 2019 Ashes campaign, scored 549 runs, including a 215 in the third and final test, continued his rapid rise through the cricketing ranks. 

The Frank Worrell trophy

While this trophy isn’t what it once was in the 1980s and 1990s, when the West Indies were international sports most dominant sides. 

When Australia and the West Indies last clashed for this trophy in the 2022-23 summer it was a real non-contest. West Indian cricket’s uncontrollable slide continued over the two-test series.

Marnus Labuschagne scored 502 runs, more than twice the West Indian top-scorer, Kragg Brathwaite’s total (196). Within this dominance, Labuschagne became the equal-fastest player to 3,000 test runs.

Another interesting fact about the most recent Frank Worrell trophy contest. Aussie skipper Pat Cummins took his 200th wicket in the first test. This meant Australia became the first test side to boast four bowlers (Cummins, Starc, Josh Hazlewood, and Lyon) to feature four players with 200 or more test wickets.

The Benaud-Qadir trophy

Australia versus Pakistan is always an interesting match-up. While the two nations have contested cricket matches for many years, the Benaud-Qadir trophy was only launched in the 2021-22 series. 

Australia won the inaugural, three-test series 1-0. Two draws in the first two tests set up an enthralling decider in Lahore. Australia won by 115 runs, with Usman Khawaja playing in the country of his birth, scoring 91 and 104 not-out to guide Australia to victory.

The only major trophies not currently held by the Australian men’s team

The ICC Men’s Champions trophy — currently held by Pakistan, who won the most recent edition of the tournament in 2017. Australia have the chance to add this title to the trophy cabinet in 2025.

Unfortunately for the Aussies, they also aren’t the current holders of the T20 World Cup, which England won most recently in 2022 having downed Pakistan in the final at the MCG.

The Aussies were also unable to win back the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in early 2023, going down to India in the four-Test series 2-1.

australia's cricket success, major trophies
Aussie captains Alyssa Healy (left) & Pat Cummins (right)

Every major cricket trophy currently held by the Australian women’s team

Women’s Ashes

Much like the Men’s side, Australia’s women’s outfit marched over to England with hopes of winning the Ashes in enemy territory. They won the one-match Test series, before subsequently losing the ODI and T20 series.

However, Australia did enough to retain; a points-based system across all three formats was used to decide the series outcome. With both sides finishing on eight points, and the series ending in a draw, Australia’s women’s side extended its Ashes reign. 

Women’s One Day International World Cup

Australia travelled across the Tasman to contest this tournament. In the Christchurch-held final it was the old enemy, and reigning Women’s ODI world champions, England.

Alyssa Healy starred, wiping the floor with the English bowling attack on her way to a fine 170, as Australia won by 71 runs, rescuing the trophy from English shores. Healy’s tournament total of 509 runs was more than any other player.

Meg Lanning, Women's Ashes
Meg Lanning is one of Australia’s most successful cricketers

Women’s T20 World Cup

South Africa hosted an Ashleigh Gardner-inspired Aussies on their way to their sixth T20 World Cup title in 2023.

Without losing a game, Australia progressed through to the final in Cape Town, where 13,000 hostile home fans aimed to make life hard for them.

Their efforts went unrewarded. Batting first Australia set a respectable, but not imposing, 156, thanks to a 70 run effort from Beth Mooney.

Opener Laura Wolvaardt’s 61 runs worked as hard as anything to get South Africa within touching distance of victory. Alas, the home side fell short, allowing Australia’s 2023 cricketing dominance to continue its breakneck momentum. 

The Commonwealth Games

Another tournament where Australia failed to lose a game, although the semi-final victory over New Zealand ran close. 

In the final, Australia beat India by nine runs with Beth Mooney cementing herself as one of the nation’s greatest big game players. It was the first time women’s cricket had featured at the Commonwealth Games, and just the second time in history the sport featured at the competition. 

ICC Women’s Championship

Running from 2017-2020, much in the same way the World Test Championship runs over multiple years for Mens cricket, this 21-fixture tournament ended in Australian victory.

Over the course of the competition, the Southern Stars won 17, lost one, while another three ended in a non-result. Alyssa Healy’s 1,000 run effort was enough to see her named as the competition’s top-scorer.

Victory ensured Australia’s qualification to the 2022 Women’s Cricket World Cup which, as we all know, they unsurprisingly won.

Picture of Kyle Robbins
Kyle Robbins
Kyle is a senior sports writer and producer at Only Sports who lives and breathes sport, with a particular burning passion for everything soccer, rugby league, and cricket. You’ll most commonly find him getting overly hopeful about the Bulldogs and Chelsea’s prospects. Find Kyle on LinkedIn.

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