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#OnTheUp: Steve Smith, Afghanistan, and contrasting triumphs

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Afghanistan registered a monumental Test victory and Australia retained the urn – the last few days have seen history being created.

After the disappointment at Headingley, it was the magic of Steve Smith that made the Old Trafford victory that much more sweeter for Australia, who retained the Ashes in England after 18 long years. 

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Even a group of Jack Leachs could not save the hosts ...

But while the England men did not have much to cheer about, the girls' serenading really impressed singer Laura Wright!

Even as Australia secured the urn in their 824th Test, Afghanistan registered a historic 224-run victory over Bangladesh in just their third Test. As sweet as victory was, there was sadness as well, as one of their most influential players retired from Test cricket.

Afghanistan weren't the only new kids on the block to taste success, with Thailand Women remarkably securing their place in the ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2020, in what will be their maiden premier tournament appearance.

Elsewhere in the world, in small villages, cricket continues to be a source of ... err, laughter. Never question a village cricketer's commitment towards the game!

And lastly, a word of advice – when Jimmy Neesham is in a good mood, do not attempt to take a dig at him, it may will backfire!

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