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Steven Smith rues lack of partnership after series whitewash

Steve Smith (right) was disappointed with Australia's performance against South Africa
Steve Smith (right) was disappointed with Australia's performance against South Africa
©REUTERS / Action Images

Australian captain Steven Smith lamented on their inability to build partnerships on a consistent basis after losing the One-Day International series 0-5 to South Africa.

The visitors looked out of sort with the bat especially except for David Warner, who scored two magnificent centuries in the series while Smith notched a 108 in the third game in Durban. However, they failed to get past the Proteas in all the five games.

In the fifth ODI in Cape Town, Warner smashed a belligerent 173 to wage a lone fight in Australia's chase of 328 but with wickets tumbling at regular intervals at the other end, Australia could manage only 296.

"We were not able to put enough partnerships together. We had guys who had start and unable to get on with it," Smith said in the post match conference.

"Having said that David was magnificent. To score 170 out of the 290 runs was remarkable. Rest of us were not good enough.

"When you play in this part of the world and in these wickets, 40's are not going to be enough.

"You need big scores and that's what the South African batters have done. Their top four was magnificent throughout the series."

With Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood rested, Australia fielded a number of debutants in the bowling department in Chris Tremain, Joe Mennie and Daniel Worrall.

Tremain made his opportunity count with seven wickets from four matches while Mennie and Worrall struggled which allowed the Proteas batsmen to play attacking brand of cricket.

Admitting it was not easy to play in South African conditions with an inexperienced bowling line-up, Smith hopes this experience will benefit the bowlers going forward.

"Disappointing series. We have been outplayed in all facets of the game. It has been a tough series and hopefully some guys can learn a bit about themselves and us as a team as well.

"It is particularly tough when you have three debutants bowlers in South Africa and it is never going to be easy against quality players. Hopefully, those guys can learn little bit from the series."

This was the first time in the history of the game, Australia were whitewashed in a five-match ODI series and Smith could not hide his disappointment.

"I have never played in an ODI series where we lost all five games. It has been a difficult series but the group struck together well and we have been looking ways to improve.

"Our preparations were good but we were not able to do the business. We had an inexperienced side to be fair and it has been a good challenge for those guys to see the step up to the international cricket.

"I am sure those guys will be lot better in the run."

Australia will now host South Africa in a three-match Test series, which kicks-off on 3rd November in Perth.

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