PERTH – Australia captain Tim Paine says he is encouraged by his emerging team's ruthless streak after the hosts crushed New Zealand on the fourth day to secure a commanding 296-run victory in the first test on Sunday.
Reminiscent of hard-bitten sides during their heyday, Australia dominated the day-night contest throughout as New Zealand wilted with tame scores of 166 and 171.
A rejuvenated Australia won their third straight test of the home season since retaining the Ashes in England and stretched their unbeaten run in day-night matches to seven.
Having helped rebuild Australia since last year's damaging ball-tampering scandal, Paine was pleased with his team's hard-nosed approach. Australia have won their last three tests inside four days.
"I think certainly over the last 18 months there has been drastic improvement in this cricket team," Paine told reporters. "We're moving in the right direction and happy the way we've played the last three tests. We're still improving and getting better."