Hazlewood, leading the Australian attack in the absence of the injured Mitchell Starc, captured six for 70 giving him nine wickets for the match. “Josh Hazlewood led the attack. He really stood up and bowled beautifully. Last night he got the new ball swinging and seaming around, which a lot of the bowlers did in these conditions. He’s had a big workload over the last little while, so we will have to take a look at that. We don’t want to break him, we have a lot of cricket to play in the next couple of months, so there might be a mixed load amongst a couple of players,” Smith said.
The under-pressure Shaun Marsh was the main contributor to Australia’s successful chase of the 187-run target. Marsh only got back in the side through a hamstring injury to Usman Khawaja but seized his opportunity with a steely 49, forged in difficult batting conditions against the hooping pink ball under floodlights. Smith denied suggestions by commentators that Marsh had been playing for his Test spot, after being run out cheaply in the first innings.
“I never saw Shaun playing for his Test career. It was fantastic for Shaun to get an opportunity. He’s been batting extremely well and I think Shaun has come in and done a terrific job. He is best suited at number five and he showed his class the way he played tonight. He looked together and his game was in good order, and the way he played under pressure with his brother Mitch to put a partnership together was really crucial for us at that stage,” Smith said.
Smith also had glowing praise for senior paceman Peter Siddle, who battled back spasms and the loss of his ailing grandmother, to take his 200th Test wicket during the Test and hit the winning runs. “It’s always tough losing someone close to you. We got around Sidds this morning and he came out and gave it his all as well like he always does. It was great to see him get 200 Test wickets this week, that’s an amazing feat and he should be really proud of how he performed over the last couple of days,” the skipper said.
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