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The urn returns: Australia claims the Ashes in tense conclusion

Macquarie National News

Australia has retained the Ashes with a 185-run victory against England in a tense final day of the Fourth Test at Old Trafford.

Josh Hazelwood claimed the final wicket in the final hour of play, to dismiss England for 197.

Steve Smith was named man of the match after his destructive double century in the first innings.

The victory gives Australia an unassailable 2-1 series lead which means, being the holder of the urn, they will retain it regardless of the result in the final Test The Oval.

Tim Paine is the first Australian captain to bring the Ashes home since Steve Waugh in 2001.

But it didn’t come as easily as many predicted.

Opener Joe Denley (53 from 123 balls) was the only English batsmen who passed 40, but several lower order batsmen occupied the crease for long periods, pushing the day’s cricket into the final hour.

Perhaps symbolically given Australia’s luck with umpiring this series, the final wicket  — Craig Overton (21 from 105 balls) — fell via DRS, with Overton reviewing the LBW decision.

The victory prompted jubilant celebrations from the Australians, with partying lasting well into the evening on the Old Trafford field.

3AW regular Tony Jones got caught up in those celebrations with a particularly — er — excited Marcus Harris during a live cross on the Today Show.

Click PLAY to watch 

(Photo by Visionhaus via Getty)

Macquarie National News