Reasons why Test matches starting on December 26 called Boxing Day

On the Boxing Day of 2023, two Test matches will be played. Early in the day, Pakistan will take on Australia. Later on, South Africa and India will take on each other.

Mathew K
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Boxing Day Test

Boxing Day Test (Image Credit: Twitter)

Every year, December 26 is celebrated as Boxing Day in a lot of countries. The day arrives after Christmas and is celebrated in countries that were the colony of Britain during the draconian British rule. Also, the day is celebrated in the United Kingdom. Talking about the day, it started with Queen Victoria's rule in the 1800s.

As per the day's tradition, the servants, who come from the lower part of British society, receive hand-picked gifts from their masters. The day was named Boxing Day as poor people get gift boxes and open them in churches. Cricket's connection with the day, the first-ever game was played between Victoria and New State Wales state teams in Australia. Years later, in 1950-51, an Ashes match was played between both teams. 

Two Test matches will start on Boxing Day

Early in the day, Pakistan and Australia will play each other in Melbourne. While the home team is leading by 1-0, the Asian side needs to win to remain alive in the series. On the other hand, South Africa and India will play the first game of the two-match Test series in Centurion. The World Number One Test side is looking to win their first Test series in the rainbow nation.

Australia XI: David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Mitch Marsh, Alex Carey (wk), Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins (c), Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood

Pakistan XII: Imam-Ul-Haq, Abdullah Shafique, Shan Masood (c), Babar Azam, Saud Shakeel, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Salman Ali Agha, Shaheen Afridi, Hasan Ali, Mir Hamza, Aamir Jamal, Sajid Khan (final team to be confirmed at the coin toss)

South Africa Test squad: Temba Bavuma (c), David Bedingham, Nandre Burger, Gerald Coetzee, Tony de Zorzi, Dean Elgar, Marco Jansen, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Wiaan Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Keegan Petersen, Kagiso Rabada, Tristan Stubbs, Kyle Verreynne (wk).

India Test squad: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah (vc), Prasidh Krishna, KS Bharat (wk), Abhimanyu Easwaran.

Boxing Day