Australia's stunning comeback in the Perth test looks like embarrassing a local bookmaker who paid out on England retaining the Ashes earlier this week.
Australia were bowled out for 268 on Thursday and, with England already a match up and only needing a drawn series to keep the urn, Sportsbet.com.au decided to pay out on $400,000 worth of bets.
"Unfortunately for Australian cricket fans the writing is on the wall and we can't see the Aussies coming back from here," the company's chief executive Matthew Tripp said in a statement posted on the company's website.
"We'd be paying out soon enough anyway so punters may as well have their cash now in time for Christmas."
On Friday, fast bowler Mitchell Johnson fired Australia to a demolition of England's batsmen for 187 runs and on Saturday they gave the tourists a steep victory target of 391 runs.
(For the sports blog Left Field go to: http://blogs.reuters.com/sport))
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