Cricket on Shell Green

Acrylic on canvas

90 x 70cm


The Australian Lighthorsemen were pictured playing cricket at Gallipoli on one of the few

areas of level ground held by the Anzacs on the Turkish Peninsula, Shell Green.

In what was possibly the first match of Twenty20, the game was organized as a diversion

while preparations were being made to evacuate 105,000 men from the battlefield in

December 1915.


The area was under constant surveillance from higher Turkish positions, and the game was

eventually abandoned when players came under attack from shell fire.


This show of bravado, along with other diversions to convince the Turks that the full

complement of Anzacs were still in their trenches, allowed the Allies to slowly retreat with

minimal casualties.  Certainly the best planned operation of the tragic eight month



Today the area contains the Shell Green Cemetery, which includes the graves of 408

Australians.  It’s a peaceful place today.