On this day in 2011: England complete memorable Ashes rout

England finished their triumphant Ashes series by beating Australia to win the fifth Test and complete a 3-1 victory on this day in 2011.

It had seemed a formality since the end of day three in Sydney that they would wrap up a series win – and so it proved when an innings-and-83-run triumph was confirmed just before noon.

Their success on the final day – as in many of those previous against an outplayed Australia in the 2010/11 series – came on the back of a mountain of runs from Alastair Cook and a supreme bowling collective led by James Anderson.

Alastair Cook
Alastair Cook’s 189 steered England to a comprehensive win (Gareth Copley/PA)

The series’ leading wicket-taker’s seven in the match took him up to 24 for the campaign, and Cook’s 189 in England’s mammoth 644 all out carried him above all but Wally Hammond among his country’s highest run-scorers in an Ashes series.

But there were several other significant contributors at the SCG, and elsewhere, as Andrew Strauss’ team achieved their long-held ambition – to become the first from England to win the Ashes outright in Australia for 24 years.

Such was their ultimate dominance – three innings victories, against one equally resounding defeat in Perth – that it was tempting to conclude it had all been a little bit more straightforward than expected.

Graeme Swann
Graeme Swann celebrates England’s Ashes win in Australia (Gareth Copley/PA)

However, captain Strauss said: “It hasn’t felt easy, there’s no doubt about that.
“There is always a feeling you don’t know what is round the corner, what’s going to be sprung on you.

“Thankfully, as the series has gone on, I think we have become more dominant – and certainly those last two Test matches were as well as an England side I’ve played in has performed.”

It remains the last time an England side won the Ashes on Australian soil.

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