Ashes 2019: Steve Smith rubs sandpaper over England’s shine with sensational 144

Birmingham: Steve Smith was back to Test cricket in the most stunning manners with his 24th century, as Australia posted 284 in their first innings on the opening day of the Ashes Series Test match here on Thursday.

Australia were dead and buried at 122 for 8, but Smith found resolute support from Peter Siddle and Nathan Lyon, to climb back onto the offensive with an outstanding 144 from 219 balls. Australia's 284 is worth nearer 450 given their back story.

Smith struck 16 fours and two sixes in his majestic knock to lift the visitors. For England, Stuart Broad grabbed 5/86 while Chris Woakes returned figures of 3/58.

Smith was emotional, took his time to decide what to do. He kissed his bat and showed it to the dressing room, where the players were up on their feet. In reply England were 10 without loss of the two over they played.

Brief scores: Australia: 284 all out (S Smith 144, T Head 35, P Siddle 44; S Broad 5-86, C Woakes 3-58) against England 10-0

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