Sachin and Other Players Applauds Steve Smith and his Game

Steve Smith Australia England Ashes 2019 Sachin Tendulkar

England suffered an injury scare to talisman Ben Stokes on a day that ended with Joe Root's team fighting to save this fourth Ashes Test following another batting masterclass from Steve Smith.

The team struggled to adjust, but under the leadership of "accidental captain" Tim Paine and with greats Ricky Ponting and Steve Waugh recruited as mentors, they have come out the other side.

It has been a brilliant return to Test cricket for Smith, following his high-profile sacking as captain and suspension following Australia's ball-tampering scandal a year ago.

Ponting said England would have to do things differently to at least make scoring runs hard for the Australia talisman.

Joe Root came out fighting after Australia retained the Ashes with a thrilling victory in the fourth test at Old Trafford on Sunday but questions remain about his effectiveness as captain.

"I couldn't be more proud of the way our group have handled everything thrown at them", he said.

If Stokes is unable to bowl, he is expected to play in the fifth Test as a specialist batsman and England will turn to one of the two bowling all-rounders in the squad that missed out at Manchester, with either Sam Curran or Chris Woakes coming in.

"He'll work out a style of play that's going to be better than what the opposition's got".

Smith had looked a touch uncertain against the bouncer in that second Test, and England were all too keen to exploit that apparent weakness.

But, even so, he has now scored 589 runs in four innings this series - his first since completing a 12-month ball-tampering ban, including three hundreds, at a colossal average of 147.25. I've been here a few times when things haven't gone our way. Just as Smith is the world's top-ranked Test batsman, Australia spearhead Pat Cummins is at the summit of the corresponding bowling rankings. "He knows the game so well and reads it so well".

"He's admitted himself Broad's had the wood on him throughout this series and he's been talking to myself and Justin (Langer) and Graeme Hick (batting coach)".

While the team will first celebrate by having a "bloody good night", Paine vowed his players would be "back on deck" for Thursday's finale at The Oval in London as "we want to win the Ashes 3-1".

World's No. 1 Test batsman Steven Smith is now being compared to legendary countryman Sir Donald Bradman for being Australia's best batsman in today's world.



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