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June 11, 2011
England captain Andrew Strauss and team director Andy Flower have been awarded an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire), while opening batsman Alastair Cook received an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen's birthday honours list released on Saturday.
The trio was rewarded for their efforts in England's historic victory in the 2010-11 Ashes in Australia - their first series win in the country in 24 years. Strauss captained the team to three innings victories in the five-Test series, which England took 3-1, apart from scoring 307 runs at 43.85. Cook topped the batting charts, with 766 runs at an average of 127.66.
"It is a great honour to receive this accolade," said Strauss, who received an MBE after England's 2005 Ashes victory at home. "It's one of the better items of post you get through the letterbox - certainly better than a gas bill. I'm very proud to receive it and, more than anything, very proud of how the team performed out there in Australia.
"Our guys really stood up under the pressure. We have achieved something, but are nowhere near the end of the road yet, and will continue to strive to improve."
Flower said it was "a lovely surprise to receive this honour."
"My family and I feel very thankful to have been welcomed into this country since moving here in 2003. I feel a great privilege and responsibility to be involved in a leadership role in English sport."
Former England offspinner Jack Birkenshaw, who played five Tests and 490 first-class games between 1958 and 1981, before turning to umpiring and coaching, also got an MBE.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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