ENGLAND surrendered the Ashes as Australia stormed to a massive win in the third Test in Perth and an unassailable 3-0 lead.
Needing 259 to make the home side bat again, the tourists lost their remaining six wickets in 34 overs to be bowled out for 218 on the fifth day.
Josh Hazlewood took 5-48 for Australia, who won by an innings and 41 runs despite play being delayed by three hours because of a wet patch on the pitch.
Water got under the covers during overnight rain and meant ground staff had to dry the surface with leaf blowers.
Hazlewood bowled Jonny Bairstow with his first delivery of the day and had Dawid Malan caught down the leg side for 54, before Pat Cummins wrapped it up by having Chris Woakes caught behind.
This is Australia’s seventh win in eight Ashes series down under and a regaining of the urn after England’s triumph on home soil in 2015.
Australia have also won eight consecutive home Tests against England, equalling a record that goes back to the 1920s.
They will now target a second successive 5-0 whitewash in Australia – and third in 11 years – with matches in Melbourne and Sydney still to come.
England’s defence of the urn was damaged before they even named their squad, when all-rounder and talisman Ben Stokes was arrested for his part in an altercation outside a Bristol nightclub in September.
Stokes did not make the trip down under, while the tourists also had to deal with the off-field distractions of Bairstow being accused of ‘headbutting’ Australia opener Cameron Bancroft and Lions batsman Ben Duckett pouring a drink over James Anderson.
On the field, they had opportunities. Australia were reduced to 76-4 and 209-7, yet still won the first Test by 10 wickets, while England were poor with ball and bat in the first innings of the second Test, with a recovery coming too late.
In Perth, they slipped from 368-4 to 403 all out, then saw Australia rack up 662-9 declared.