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Ashes 2019 | Winning Ashes in England Was in My Bucket List: Steve Smith

Steve Smith said winning the Ashes in England was in his 'bucket list' after Australia retained the urn with a 185-run win in the fourth Test in Manchester on Sunday (September 8).

Cricketnext Staff |September 9, 2019, 9:18 AM IST
Ashes 2019 | Winning Ashes in England Was in My Bucket List: Steve Smith

Steve Smith said winning the Ashes in England was in his 'bucket list' after Australia retained the urn with a 185-run win in the fourth Test in Manchester on Sunday (September 8).

Smith, Man of the Match for scores of 211 and 82 in the Test, now has 671 runs from just five innings in the series. The next in the list is Ben Stokes, with 354 runs from eight innings.

"It feels amazing to know the urn is coming home now," Smith told the broadcasters after the match. "I've been here a few times when things haven't gone our way. We didn't perform to the best of our abilities in 2013 and 2015. To know it's coming home is extremely satisfying. To come back here, I always wanted to tick off my bucket list to get the urn over here. Obviously there is another game and we would like to win that. I've been here a few times, I wanted to tick this off my bucket list.

"The boys were getting a little tired towards the end. At the start of the day we thought if hold on to our eight chances, we would have a good chance. Credit to the way they fought and Overton should great courage in the end. Fortunately the boys got the job done.

Smith said he was 'proud' to be a part of this team and praised Tim Paine's captaincy, particularly the move to bring in Marnus Labuschagne that resulted in the wicket of Jack Leach.

"I didn't enjoy watching last week," he said referring to Australia's loss at Headingley. "But what a feeling today. Special feeling and really proud to be part of this group of boys. We've won key moments, built up pressure on England. It's incredibly pleasing to get rewards for the hard work. Tim (Paine) has done a terrific job, he's got a group together doing a terrific job. Bowling Marnus showed a bit of courage, Tim's been exceptional."

Smith said he freshened up during his 12-month suspension due to ball tampering, and used the time to work hard on his game. He also warned England that there's more to come at the Oval, the venue for the fifth and final Ashes Test.

"A year off where I could freshen up, I've been so relaxed and chilled hard but working incredibly hard on by game. I love batting, don't really like watching cricket," he said. "It's been a good series, really enjoyed my time in the middle. I'm incredibly proud of the way I've performed and helped the team. I'm two hundreds from two games at The Oval, so it's a place I like batting. We came here to win the Ashes. We'll do our best to go 3 up at The Oval."

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