SYDNEY, January 7- England crushed Australia by an innings and 83 runs in the final Sydney Test to win their first Ashes series Down Under for 24 years on Friday.It was England’s third innings victory as they swept to a comprehensive 3-1 series win, the first since Mike Gatting’s team won 2-1 in Australia in 1986/87.
England were the last team to beat Australia at the famous Sydney Cricket Ground in 2003 when they won by a massive 225 runs.
Victory was assured after England’s bowlers ripped through the Australian top order on Thursday to leave them just three wickets on Friday’s final day to wrap up a dominant campaign.
Roared on by their fun-loving Barmy Army supporters, England powered to victory after early resistance from Steven Smith and Peter Siddle in an 86-run eighth-wicket stand.
England grabbed the wickets of Siddle, Ben Hilfenhaus and Michael Beer to wrap up victory just before noon local time.
Andrew Strauss’s team retained the Ashes with another innings hiding in last week’s fourth Melbourne Test.
England outplayed the hosts in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney while Australia won the third Test in Perth. The first Brisbane Test was drawn.