Mitchell Marsh was a surprise inclusion in the Australian cricket team for the fifth and final Ashes Test against England at The Oval. Marsh replaced all-rounder Travis Head who had struggled throughout the series. Many Australian fans were hoping that he would have an impact similar to Ben Stokes who had kept England alive in the series with his magnificent all-round performance. When Australia won the toss and chose to bowl on a placid Oval wicket, there were plenty of questions raised on Tim Paine's decision. However, Marsh ensured that Paine's decision would not be questioned as he put up a fabulous performance of bowling.
Pat Cummins had removed Joe Denly cheaply but Rory Burns and Joe Root stitched a solid stand. Josh Hazlewood got the big wicket of Burns for 47. Stokes, who had come into this match under a fitness cloud and was unable to bowl, was undone by a poor shot as he miscued a short ball to be caught at point. When Cummins got the big wicket of Joe Root for 57, the stage was set for Marsh to run through the England middle order.
Marsh set-up Jonny Bairstow brilliantly. After three outswingers, Marsh trapped Bairstow LBW with a delivery that swung back in. Marsh added his third wicket when he had Sam Curran driving at a full and wide ball outside off only for the outside edge to fly straight to Steve Smith at cover. However, the ball of the day was bowled by Marsh to Chris Woakes as he trapped the batsman plumb in front with a yorker that swung away late.
After an attacking knock by Jos Buttler, England had hopes of reaching 300 but Cummins sent Buttler back for 70 and Marsh ended up with his maiden five-wicket haul by dismissing Jack Leach for 21 to end with figures of 18.2-4-46-5.
In response, David Warner endured yet another failure thanks to a DRS howler while Jofra Archer removed Marcus Harris. However, Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith steadied the innings and took Australia to a relatively decent position at lunch. Australia have already retained the Ashes thanks to victory in the fourth Test at Old Trafford.