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Australia beat Pakistan to win Test series

Australia's Mitchell Starc (C) is congratulated by teammates after dismissing Pakistan batsman Sarfraz Ahmed on the final day of the second cricket Test match in Melbourne on December 30, 2016. WILLIAM WEST/AFP

Mitchell Starc spearheaded Australia's stunning final day innings victory over Pakistan with a mercurial bat and ball performance to claim the series in Melbourne Friday.

The fast bowler smashed 84 off 91 balls with a record seven sixes and then captured four wickets for 36 to lead Australia to a resounding innings and 18-run victory over the hapless tourists.

Skipper Steve Smith set the ball rolling for a dramatic victory when he declared Australia's first innings at 624 for eight just before lunch.

That gave Australia a 181-run lead and a minimum of 70 overs to bowl out Pakistan.

In the end the Australians needed only 53.2 overs to pull off an emphatic victory and, with their 39-run win in the first Gabba Test, to clinch the three-Test series.

While Smith was named man-of-the-match for his unbeaten 165, it was Starc who put his stamp on the game with his sensational effort with bat and ball.

Starc clubbed seven sixes, the most in an innings in a Melbourne Test, and was severe on Yasir Shah, belting the leg-spinner for five sixes.

It was an astonishing collapse by the tourists, who appeared safe from defeat after amassing 443 for nine declared in their first innings over the first three rain-affected days before losing control of the match.

The defeat was Pakistan's 11th straight test loss in Australia after their last win in Sydney in 1995.