Smith says retaining Ashes in England is bucket list moment

Australia retained the Urn by winning fourth Test in Manchester

Smith says retaining Ashes in England is bucket list moment PHOTO: AFP

Batsman Steve Smith said retaining the Ashes in England was one to tick off his bucket list after Australia beat their tradtional rivals by 185 runs to win the fourth Test at Old Trafford on Sunday.

England battled tenaciously to try and force an unlikely draw on the final day but Australia eventually bowled them out for 197 to take a 2-1 lead to the Oval and ensure that even a series draw would mean they retain the urn.

Former captain Smith, who has endured boos from the home crowds for his role in last year’s ball-tampering scandal but has responded by piling up 671 runs in five innings, said it was incredibly special to retain the Ashes in England, something Australia have not done for 18 years.

“It feels amazing to know the urn is coming home,” he told Sky Sports as the celebrations continued around him.

“I’ve been here a few times where things haven’t quite gone our way. We haven’t performed to the best of our ability in ‘13 and ‘15 but it was always one I wanted to tick off my bucket list to get the urn over here.”

Australia’s attack toiled long and hard all day after England had begun the day 18-2 chasing an unlikely 383 to win.