London: Australia defeated England by an innings and 46 runs Sunday in the fifth and final Ashes Test for a consolation victory at The Oval.
Resuming the fourth day on 203-6, England was all out for 286 in 101.4 overs. Jos Buttler went for 42, driving Mitchell Marsh to Mitchell Starc at mid-off, and Moeen Ali was out for 35.
Peter Siddle claimed 4-35 on a rain-hit day as Australia won with more than a day to spare.
England had an insurmountable 3-1 lead in the series, having regained the urn by winning the fourth test at Trent Bridge.
But Australia will take some comfort in losing 3-2, rather than 4-1, in captain Michael Clarke's last test.
The fifth test took on a familiar pattern with the side gaining the first significant advantage going on to win. None of the five tests lasted their full five days in a series full of batting collapses.
At The Oval England never looked in the match after Australia's first innings of 481 — with Steven Smith scoring 143 — and was forced to follow on after a first-innings 149.
The hosts lost their last four wickets for 83 runs Sunday either side of a two-hour rain break.
Siddle made the first breakthrough of an increasingly overcast day, under floodlights in his second over with the second new ball.
He beat Mark Wood's forward prod and overturned an initial not-out lbw decision on review.
Buttler had worked hard the previous evening, alongside Alastair Cook, to regain form in the attempted rearguard.
But he gave it all away disappointingly eight short of his 50, to the 107th ball he faced, when he chipped Marsh on the up to a tumbling mid-off.
Moeen and Stuart Broad then batted for 10 overs together - long enough for the forecast rain to arrive and delay the inevitable.
But Broad lasted only five more minutes, on the resumption, bowled off-stump after missing a drive at the admirable Siddle.
The last act of an oddly uneven series then came when Moeen wafted an edge behind off the same bowler.
Overall, England will still be delighted to win a series it was widely expected to lose, while Clarke wanted — and got — a successful send-off in his 115th and last match.
Victory for the hosts would have been the first time the English had ever won four tests in a five-match Ashes series in England.
England has a series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates followed by a tour of South Africa in the winter coming up.
As well as Clarke, 37-year-old opener Chris Rogers is also quitting the international game for Australia. There is a sense this is the last series for the current generation — including Brad Haddin, Shane Watson and Adam Voges — before a new era begins in Australia test cricket under Smith, the newly appointed captain.