THE Australian cricket team may have left with the Ashes following a successful summer and it was a similar story back in 1989.

Back then, one local company played a key role in helping the Aussies on their tour. Crystal Carriage of Radcliffe spent 125 days with the victorious visitors in a £250,000 luxury coach which ferried them around.

Despite the hard-drinking image of the Aussies - batsman David Boon reportedly drank a staggering 52 beers on the 20 hour flight over from Sydney - the team were great ambassadors for their country according to Tony Teece, one of the partners in the coach firm based on Dale Industrial Estate.

He said that drinking sessions - the team was sponsored by Castlemaine - were reserved mainly for post match celebrations. And there were many of them as the Aussies won the series 4-0