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Australian cricketers enjoy return to form

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 9/12/2016 Roger Vaughan

Less than a month after sweeping changes to the mauled Test side, Australia's cricketers have regained their mojo heading into the Pakistan series.

The third Test win over South Africa and a thumping series sweep of the three one dayers against New Zealand mean renewed confidence for captain Steve Smith and his players.

Australia wrapped up the one dayers with a resounding 117-run win over New Zealand on Friday night at the MCG.

David Warner's 156 was his second-successive century and he outscored New Zealand by nine runs.

The ball will now change from white to pink for the first Test against Pakistan on December 15 at the Gabba.

But Smith has welcomed the change of fortunes.

Australia had a 5-0 one-day series loss in South Africa before losing their first two home Tests.

The disastrous second Test in Hobart prompted six changes for the dead rubber in Adelaide.

After claiming that Test, Australia dominated the New Zealand series.

"It's been a great series for us and great for our confidence as well," Smith said.

"Winning is a lot better than losing and it becomes a bit of a habit as well.

"Hopefully we can keep up this habit for the rest of the summer.

"I'm just proud of the way our guys played, after a tough tour to South Africa where we lost 5-0."

Australia's top order batsmen were particularly impressive against New Zealand, led by Smith and Warner.

"It's a different form of the game, but obviously guys have been getting runs - and some big runs," Smith said.

"It's always nice to spend that kind of time in the middle.

"Obviously it's going to be different in Brisbane against a pink ball, against a quality opposition like Pakistan.

"We're going to have to be at our best if we're going to score some runs up there."

Paceman Mitchell Starc was another standout and his yorkers were notably effective at the MCG as he snared 3-34.

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