Gloom:  Alastair Cook of England speaks to the media   at the end of the second Ashes Test in Adelaide.

Gloom: Alastair Cook of England speaks to the media at the end of the second Ashes Test in Adelaide. Photo: Getty Images

While Australians rejoice at their cricket team's rise like a phoenix from the Ashes with a second Test win in Adelaide, the English are burying themselves in gloom.

Only a few months ago, the British media were offering mild condolences to Australia following England's victory in the first Test.

Now, the teams' fortunes have done a U-turn, reflected in headlines such as "mangled", "shambles" and "blood-letting".

s

Australia preparing to bury England at the WACA.

"England's glory years are over," London's Telegraph cried.

"England aren't scared ... we've just been appalling in Oz," The Sun lamented.

Former batsman Geoffrey Boycott, like many British sports writers, is less than thrilled with his fellow countrymen.

He wrote in the Telegraph that England were "on their way down" and the cricketers needed to start batting with "more commonsense and stop giving wickets away".

There is "not a cat in hell's chance" that England will retain the Ashes, he said.

Boycott also wrote on the BBC website the English cricketers were facing "annihilation" in the Ashes because they lacked the "desire and heart" to compete against the Australians.

The reports echo those in Australian newspapers only a few months ago, when the Australians were defeated for the seventh Test in a row.

"England, it is clear, have all the issues. And they have precious little time to solve them," Tom Fordyce wrote for the BBC.

The Mirror went for a philosophical analysis, saying the players had been "bewildered by the man-of-the-match Mitchell Johnson and co." and should "look deep within their souls and find out if they still believe they can retain the Ashes despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary".

Meanwhile, The Independent got straight to the point, saying: "England's Ashes shambles is uglier than '06 whitewash".

The Telegraph has also done a wrap-up on Australia's reporting of the series so far, saying: "The Australian newspapers were not short of confidence after their side made swift work of taking a 2-0 Ashes lead on the fifth day in Adelaide."

Perhaps wanting to be insulted but giving in to the Australian sense of humour, the website republished a Fairfax Media caricature of the English cricket team's gravestone above the caption, "The end is nigh."

Fairfax subscriptions