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History imbues the Ashes with the sort of significance that goes beyond words. Pride, adulation and a place in cricketing folklore await great Ashes performances but VB Beer have added a further incentive for Australia. Under the "Shout the nation" commitment, if Australia win back the urn from England over the next two months, free coupons for the beer will be printed in newspapers at the conclusion of the final Test on January 8. Feeding 13 million Aussies a free beer would cost the company AUS$20 million at retail prices which makes this seem more like a bet against the hosts than a patriotic promise but if Ricky Ponting is celebrating at the end of the series it could be quite an after party.