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By Amy Lofthouse
BBC Sport at The Oval
Australia have”unfinished business” and can”constantly improve,” says captain Tim Paine, after the attracted Ashes series guaranteed that the tourists took the urn home.
England won deny Australia a series victory in England and the fifth and final Test at The Oval by 135 runs to draw the series 2-2.
Paine said the series wasn’t”an ending” for his captaincy and he had”a little bit to give in that distance”.
“The urn is exactly what we came to have,” he advised Test Match Special.
“We understood the principles around the Ashes and also a draw is great enough.
“I think there is tons of advancement in this side. There is always things we can get better at and there’s always to.
“I’m excited about a tiny bit more”
Paine was appointed Australia captain in the wake of the scandal in March 2018 and mimicked last year’s home.
Asked about the way in which the team had turned around since the events in South Africa, Paine stated:”It started before this Ashes series. It had been there at the lead-up before the World Cup.
“From where we have come from, to create a World Cup semi-final and retain the Ashes is still a really big achievement from what this group was through.”
Batsman Steve Smith won the Compton-Miller trophy for his astonishing series that saw him score 774 runs in 110.57.
Smith returned to Test cricket after serving a year old ban for his part at the affair that was ball-tampering and has been heavily booed throughout the opening phases of this collection.
However, he had been given a standing ovation by the audience at The Oval after England maintained his wicket.
“I noticed I got applause. It was a very great reception today I got and it meant a great deal to get it in the crowd.
“The series has ebbed and flowed. I have loved every minute and I’m very proud of how I have been in a position to performance for Australia and also to deliver the urn home.
“You always want to get better as a player. Keep working hard and it’s ever too much.”
Smith also thanked his wife, Dani, and his family for their assistance .
“It is our first wedding anniversary today. She’d hate me if I didn’t mention that,” Smith explained in his post-match news conference.
“The support she has given me over here, I can not thank her enough.”
Paine added the experience in England of retaining the Ashes will be something he’d”never forget”.
“I didn’t think I’d still be doing it [that the captaincy], to be honest,” he added.
“I am blessed to be in the place I’m in.”
Australia leave England using all the world’s number one batsman in Smith Pat Cummins, and number one bowler.
However their batting has struggled – with the exclusion of Marnus and Smith Labuschagne, their best and middle order have not contributed.
David Warner finishes the string with 95 runs from 10 Test innings – the cheapest yield for virtually any opener at a five Test series – and Australia have attempted two openers at Cameron Bancroft and Marcus Harris, neither of whom have especially impressed.
The tour was bookended by matthew Wade but there are concerns within Usman Khawaja Warner along with Travis Head.
Australia will leave a sense of disappointment about not being able to close out a series win.
“Tim Paine will have a couple nightmares about this throw,” former Australia fast bowler Glenn McGrath said, after Paine chose to bowl first on a great batting track.
“England got a lot from this last Evaluation and 2-2 isn’t too way off the mark.”
Analysis and view from the cricket correspondent of the BBC.
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