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Home 2012 Major Match dates confirmed
Lord’s will host the first and last Tests of the 2012 summer, as well as two One Day Internationals, after the full Major Match schedule was unveiled.
The international summer kicks off at the Home of Cricket with the West Indies facing the number one ranked Test side England, starting on Thursday 17 May.
South Africa then travel to the UK for the second half of the summer, playing the third and final Test of the series at Lord’s. The match starts on Thursday 16 August.
The public ticket ballot for major matches in 2012 will be opened later this year.
Australia and South Africa also visit NW8 for NatWest ODIs in 2012, with Australia playing the first of their five 50-over fixtures at Lord’s on Friday 29 June.
The South African’s then return to the Home of Cricket on Sunday 2 September for the fourth ODI of the five match series.
Major Match cricket at Lord’s will conclude on Saturday 15 September, with the Clydesdale Bank 40 Final marking the 50th anniversary of domestic one-day finals at Lord’s.
The West Indies will be playing their 20th Test at Lord’s and hoping to reverse a recent run of poor results – with four defeats in their last five visits.
Perhaps the most memorable of those took place in 2000, when England recovered from a 133-run first innings deficit to record a two-wicket win, bowling the West Indies out for just 54 in the process.
South Africa’s recent record at Lord’s meanwhile is impressive, with three victories and a draw since their readmission to Test cricket in 1992.
Graeme Smith’s side are currently ranked second to England in Test cricket with series’ against Australia, Sri Lanka and New Zealand to come before their trip to the UK.
Fans can whet their appetite for the 2013 Ashes series with Michael Clarke’s number one ranked ODI team visiting in June and July.
Australia last played a an ODI at Lord’s in 2010 when Shaun Tait inspired his side to victory, becoming the first bowler to pass 100mph at Lord’s in the process.
Their recent ODI record at Lord’s is outstanding, with eight wins in their last nine visits – with one match tied.