Ladbrokes fielded a £250,000 single bet on England at odds of 7/4 to triumph Down Under as the odds on an historic win for the tourists continue to tumble.
David Williams of Ladbrokes said: “As opening salvos go this has to be one of the bravest. It’s a monster bet and a sure sign of the confidence behind the England team.
“They’ve got all the momentum and this bet has all but confirmed our position on the eve of the Ashes: we’re terrified of an England win.”
England are now into 13/8 for the series on the back of the huge bet with Australia clinging on to their position of odds-on favourites at 10/11. A drawn series is 9/2.
Ladbrokes have also released their biggest ever range of Ashes specials markets with Graham Swann the 9/1 favourite to be Player of the Series. A hat-trick this series is 12/1 and the firm offer 16/1 about the opening ball of the series being a wide.