Australia beat England by innings & 123 runs in final Ashes test

Mitch Marsh left celebrates with brother Shaun after bringing up his ton

MATT KING GETTY IMAGES Mitch Marsh left celebrates with brother Shaun after bringing up his ton

Seven weeks of intense Ashes battle across Australia ended, as a lot of them have over the last three decades, with the hosts revelling in a comprehensive series triumph after an emphatic victory at the Sydney Cricket Ground. At lunch, England were fighting hard for a draw, at 5 for 144, still trailing by 159 runs.

Australia captain Steve Smith was unsurprisingly named the Compton-Miller Medallist after his side's 4-0 Ashes success against England.

By the time they return to Australia in 2021, England will have not won a Test here in more than a decade.

England have endured plenty of taxing sessions this summer but none compare to the punishment they copped during Sydney's heatwave.

Root was unbeaten on 42 at the close with Jonny Bairstow not out 17. The England skipper suffered from dehydration and was kept in care overnight.

Despite Smith's determination to share the credit, he was the inevitable selection as player of the series after scoring 687 runs at an average of 137.4, backing up his status as the world's top batsman.

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Mark Stoneman was leg before wicket to Mitchell Starc for a duck and lost a review in the process, and next ball Alastair Cook was put down at first slip by Shaun Marsh off Josh Hazlewood for five.

Australia came into the series as massive favourites partly due to the home advantage but also the opposition (England) which was not in the pink of their health.

There were six other centuries from Australians - two apiece from the controversially selected Marsh brothers - which was a reward, Smith said, for their patience.

"The more we play together, the more we're going to get better as as group", Smith said.

Jimmy Anderson was then caught behind to end the day, the fifth test and the Ashes series.

"We have just got to keep getting better and improving as a team".

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