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February 9, 2006
Vaughan received his OBE from the Queen, as did England coach Duncan Fletcher, chairman of selectors David Graveney and team manager Phil Neale. The other 11 England players who took the field during the five-Test series received MBEs, the first rung on the ladder of the honours system. England women's captain Clare Connor also received an OBE after leading her team to victory in their Test series with Australia.
Kevin Pietersen, seemingly in recognition of the fact he was meeting the Queen, abandoned his trademark hairstyle for a more sober, dark look.
The players and management were given a lunchtime reception following the official ceremony. "It was unbelievable ... a great feeling," Simon Jones admitted. "But it was nerve-wracking too, because you go out there and don't want to mess up."
Ian Bell agreed with Jones. "It is more nerve-wracking going in there than going out to bat. At least you have an idea what to expect then, but today I just didn't know what to expect when I first went into that room."
Pietersen describing the ceremony as "humbling" and Andrew Flintoff was equally overawed: "I didn't know what to expect beforehand ... but this is a little piece of history."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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