IT was England that proved to be pitch-perfect in Cardiff as they triumphed by five runs in a T20 cracker against Australia.

The hosts won the clash slotted in between the Ashes and the one-day series thanks to a superb last over by Ben Stokes just when an imperious 90 from touring captain Steve Smith, who had scored 33 twice in the first Test at the Swalec Stadium, seemed set to win the day.

Australia just fell short of chasing down 183 on a fine wicket, which will have come as a relief to Glamorgan bosses.

The county were fined and docked points after a one-day match against Hampshire was abandoned at the start of the month because of a dangerous pitch.

Batters were in trouble because of inconsistent bounce on that dodgy strip – which will be dug up and not used for three years – but it was spectators that had to be careful this time with the ropes cleared 16 times.

England amassed 182 for five thanks to 72 not out off 46 balls from Moeen Ali and 74 off 39 from Eoin Morgan but the feeling as they headed off at half-time was that they were still a touch short.

England started slowly after being asked to bat and lost big-hitting openers Alex Hales and Jason Roy in the fourth over to the rapid Pat Cummins with the score on just 18, the former bowled by a full toss after never looking comfortable against the pace and the latter skying one to mid-off.

The six-over powerplay yielded just 27 but Moeen and Morgan soon upped the pace to get the Cardiff crowd on their feet as well as ducking for cover.

The left-handers added 135 with the captain hitting seven sixes before being caught on the boundary by Shane Watson off the bowling of Nathan Coulter-Nile.

The Australians then ending the innings well to leave the game in the balance but started their reply poorly with dangerman David Warner caught for 4 to the last ball of David Willey’s opening over and Shane Watson comically bowled by Steve Finn for 8, chopping on after failing in his effort to kick the ball away from his stumps.

But Steve Smith and Glenn Maxwell ran riot to take them to 124 for three, needing 59 from the final seven overs.

Maxwell fell for 44 to a stunning flying Ben Stokes catch in the deep off Moeen to give England a glimmer of hope but Smith put the Aussies on the brink with 90.

He was caught off Willey to leave his side needing 18 off 10 balls and then 12 off Stokes’ final over but the Durham all-rounder was on the money throughout with Australia ending on 177 for eight.

- England Women ended a disappointing Ashes summer on a high with a five-wicket win over Australia in Cardiff.

Nat Sciver claimed four for 15 as Australia posted 111 for nine - Anya Shrubsole having set the tone with four early wickets of her own - then posted the top score of the match with 47.