Of all England's humiliations - and heaven knows, there have been a few over the years - their innings humbling by the West Indies must certainly figure prominently. This is rapidly becoming the ultimate Winter of Discontent. England have still not won an international fixture since they jetted off for the Stanford Series.
Australia may have slipped sharply of late, but England are increasingly the laughing stocks of world cricket; this was, of course, their first Test since they managed to rid themselves of a captain and coach simultaneously.
Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower said all the right things about increased player responsbility for match preparation, but yet again deeds failed to match words. There are few things more dispiriting in sport than the England batting collapse; here, England produced another timeless classic. It was at once unbelievable and inevitable, just as when they were bowled out for 81 in Sri Lanka 14 months ago. Considering the differences in the opposition, and the fact they finished 30 runs adrift of even that paltry total, this was in a different level alltogether. A collective failure of spirit? Or, perhaps more worryingly, of skill?
England have won only two away Tests in three years - both against a depleted New Zealand side (and even then after being thrashed in the opening Test, scene of another collapso special). A year ago, the bowlers took the blame for a batting collapse, as Harmison and Hoggard were ditched. Whilst it is clear that the bowling of Monty Panesar has become as cliched as Shane Warne's line about him having played the same Test 30-odd times, and his spark has vanished, the seamers essentially performed well enough. Graeme Swann must play in the next Test but the bigger faults, as for so long, lie in the batting departement.
Those projected mainstays of the England batting line-up for the next half-dozen years, Alastair Cook and Ian Bell, have regressed horribly in the last twelve months. Cook is a particularly problematic case; he is barely 24 and has already scored centuries in Australia, India and Sri Lanka, yet appears fatigued and incapable of capitalising when he gets in. But England have no other options in the Caribbean. Bell's is a different case, however. He has played 46 Test matches - and is he any better now than before number one? If Warne's line on Panesar is increasingly becoming the definitive word on the left-arm spinner, so Stuart Law's words on Bell - "that timid little creature" - ring true too. Time for England to send Bell back to county cricket, a season of which could yet toughen him up. Owais Shah, outstanding for England in recent ODIs, should have been handed a run in the side away to Sri Lanka - but now is better than never.
Excuses will be made in the shape of the dressing-room politics at the turn of the year. Yet the reality is England had this coming to them, just as they did in Hamilton 11 months ago. A few changes will help, and England must establish they are prepared to be ruthless with batsmen as well as bowlers. Strauss will need all his captaincy skills to get England out of this one.