Australian captain Steve Smith was outstanding in the opening Test win.
Australian captain Steve Smith was outstanding in the opening Test win.

Aussie Ashes ratings: Smith’s perfect Test

AUSTRALIA has emphatically taken a 1-0 lead in the Ashes, with a dominant 10-wicket victory over England at the Gabba.

After a slow start, in which the tourists held the upper hand for much of the first two days, Australia ultimately romped home on the back of a five-star performance from captain Steve Smith and flashes of brilliance from the pace attack.

But it was far from a perfect performance from the team as a whole - so who starred and who struggled?

Here are our Australian player ratings from the first Test.


David Warner (left) and Cameron Bancroft (right) of Australia congratulate each other at stumps on Day 4.
David Warner (left) and Cameron Bancroft (right) of Australia congratulate each other at stumps on Day 4.


26 and 87*

Out cheaply in the first innings, Warner made amends in the second, seeing Australia home with ease. Made a tricky chase a simple one.



5 and 82*

Like Warner, he misfired in the first innings but stepped up to guide Australia to victory on day four and five. The debutant just does not flinch either. Having worn one in the grille at bat-pad, he store down James Anderson after the England quick pegged him while taking a shy at the stumps.




Unlike Bancroft and Warner, he did not get the chance to make up for his first-innings woes. He did his reputation against spin no favours by falling to a straight one from Moeen Ali, but it's worth remembering his record against spin at home is very good.



141 not out

Rescued and set up the game for Australia in a 512 minute Ashes masterclass, twice resuscitating the innings to drag the hosts to a crucial lead. Helped himself to four catches in England's second innings. He's a freak.




With a batting stance that places him so far back in his crease, Handscomb is always going to be a target for lbw dismissals. It's worrying for Australia that James Anderson managed to exploit that weakness, pushing him onto the backfoot regularly before trapping him plumb in front with a yorker. A point better than Khawaja because he picked up four catches.





Marsh more than justified his selection by putting on a crucial 99-run stand with Smith when Australia's first innings threatened to go off the rails. Loses a point for putting down an important catch in the deep in England's first innings and coming within whiskers of causing Mitchell Starc serious damage with his boot spikes.




Two catches, one stumping


Had a moment to forget with the gloves in England's first innings but more than made up for it, pulling off a brilliant stumping to send Moeen Ali on his way when he was threatening to drag the tourists to a defendable total. He was picked because he has the best gloves in the country but he might also have the best ears, detecting the faintest of edges off the bat of Stuart Broad to conjure another dismissal via DRS.




3-77 and 3-51

Took the prized wicket of Alastair Cook in the first innings but was otherwise fairly comfortably dealt with by England's specialist batsmen. Lived up to his nickname 'the Mop' by cleaning up the tail both times. That's not a slight at him - just England what they would give to have someone who could wrap up the opposition's innings so quickly.



3-85 and 1-23


The figures may suggest otherwise but Cummins was Australia's best quick this match, regularly troubling England's batsmen with his pace and bounce. He was the man who ended England's 125-run second-wicket stand in the first innings, bowling a gem to remove Mark Stoneman, before bowling an even better ball to get rid of Joe Root. Then scored 42 vital runs in Australia's first innings, dominating a 66-run stand with Smith.




1-57 and 3-46

Possibly undercooked on a Gabba deck that was slow for the first two and a half days, Hazlewood was sub-par in England's first innings. But he was exceptional in the second, and took the two wickets that mattered most - Cook and Root.



2-78 and 3-67

Australia's best bowler at the Gabba, finding turn more akin with Bengaluru than Brisbane. He regularly tested the outside edge of England's plethora of left handers and the tourists need to work out how to shut him down if they are going to stand a chance this series. Missed out on the wicket of James Vince because of a Paine error but still sent the No.3 on his way with a brilliant run-out.

Multi-million dollar homes attract hundreds of enquiries

Premium Content Multi-million dollar homes attract hundreds of enquiries

Locals and high-flyers have been in the mix of buyers

Another Northern Rivers council declares housing ‘emergency’

Premium Content Another Northern Rivers council declares housing ‘emergency’

Councillors will be calling on the state and federal governments as homelessness...

Comedian, lawyer and singer sets sights on council election

Premium Content Comedian, lawyer and singer sets sights on council election

This Byron Shire identity is eyeing off a new political role