A THRILLING summer of terrible cricket reached its climax yesterday as England regained the Ashes by being marginally less dreadful than Australia.
Andrew Strauss's men stormed to a resounding victory at the Oval, with many claiming the England squad could now take its place in cricketing history as one of the best awful teams ever assembled.
The Queen led the tributes saying: "Your victory continues the proud tradition of British sportsmen being not quite as catastrophically bad at something as someone else.
"You have all played very poorly for much of the summer but showed great strength and fortitude by standing around and watching Australia being even worse.
"And, let's be honest, who would have guessed that? Not me, for starters. I owe the Duke of York eighty quid and he's a bloody golfer."
Delighted England captain, Andrew Strauss, said: "I always knew we would win the series as long as we matched Australia on a collapse-for-collapse basis.
"So you see, everything went exactly as I planned it. Yes it did. Shut up."
And man of the match, Stuart Broad, added: "I'm really looking forward to coping with the comprehensively insane level of expectation you all now have. Nevertheless, I hope to continue my form as long as no-one sees me sneaking onto the pitch in the middle of the night with a garden fork and a bag of gravel."
Meanwhile all-rounder Andrew Flintoff is currently on his way to Sao Paolo after accidentally staggering onto a freighter at four o'clock this morning dressed as a Vietnamese prostitute and swigging peach schnapps and lighter fluid from a policeman's helmet with a little umbrella in it.
Tom Logan, deputy editor of Wisden, said Flintoff should now be in line for a knighthood, adding: "They've been handing them out to any fucker that can row a boat, so I don't see why Freddie shouldn't get one for staying sober enough to strap his pads on all by himself."
Spokesmen for the Indian, South African and Sri Lankan cricket boards paid tribute to England and said they were eagerly anticipating an early opportunity to make them look like idiot schoolboys.
England's Ashes victory also topped-off an appalling week for Scotland, coming just 48 hours after the country was dubbed 'Colonel Gadaffi's rent boy'.