The Queen has officially recognised the architects of England’s triumphant Ashes test tour, by awarding MBE’s to the four Australians widely regarded to have been instrumental to England’s domination of the series.
Andrew Hilditch, David Boon, Jamie Cox and Greg Chappell were cited in the New Year’s Honours List for ‘services to the advancement of English cricket.’
The quartet are expected to travel to Britain to collect their awards when they have more time to do so, possibly as early as next week.
“The Queen is keen that those behind the scenes are not forgotten when the awards list is drawn up,” commented a Palace spokesman.
“Clearly, Her Majesty takes advice from cricket experts close to her, and it was felt that it was the Australian selectors who deserved special mention this time round.”
“For example, it was a work of genius to ask that kid from Illawong’s Burger King to go in at number six and as a frontline leg spinner,” he said.
The spokesman rebuffed suggestions that it was the players who deserved to be awarded.
“Look,” he said. “We gave an OBE to this guy back from Afghanistan; he was badly injured in a landmine explosion – had to learn to walk from scratch. He tried over and over, gripping on to a rail, attempting one painful step at a time until he could go no further and had to start again the next day.”
“Now that’s not too different from consistently selecting Michael Clarke.”
The spokesman revealed that the selectors had almost blown their chances of honours by their initial masterstroke in retaining ‘Mr. Cricket,’ Mike Hussey. Hussey went on to become Australia’s most successful batsman on the tour.
“It turned out that they thought that they were selecting his brother, David,” he recalled. “But the guy who wrote out the envelope didn’t realise that there were two of them.”
“Then we reminded them that David Hussey has a first class average of over 55 and bowls decent off-breaks. They looked confused for a bit, then realised that they must have meant to choose a chap called ‘Martin Hussey,’ a gentleman who’d been in to their office to fix the air conditioning.”
“I remember Mr Hilditch talking about him. Apparently he couldn’t bat and couldn’t bowl, but he was a top bloke and could supply his own pads.”
Nathan Hauritz was unavailable for comment.