15 Aug 2015

Smith confirmed at Australia's helm

8:47 am on 15 August 2015

The cricketer Steve Smith will become Australia's Test captain after the Ashes, following Michael Clarke's decision to retire at the end of the series.

The Australia cricket captain Steven Smith.

The Australia cricket captain Steven Smith. Photo: Photosport

Smith already leads the one-day side and will also captain the Twenty20 team in the absence of the injured Aaron Finch.

National selector Rod Marsh said he was the natural choice.

"At 26, Steve is a fine young man with extraordinary talent," Marsh said.

Fellow batsman David Warner has been named as Smith's vice-captain.

Clarke confirmed his decision to retire after the 34-year-old's side surrendered the Ashes with a heavy defeat by England at Trent Bridge, which gave the hosts the series with a 3-1 lead. The fifth and final Ashes Test, now a dead rubber, starts on Thursday night.

The Australians are playing a three-day tour match against Northamptonshire, but rain on the opening day has seen the match trimmed back to a two-day fixture.

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