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We have worked very hard for the No 1 spot: Strauss

Last updated on: August 14, 2011 11:54 IST

We have worked very hard for the No 1 spot: Strauss


Bikash Mohapatra

The English agenda was clear at the outset.

- Scorecard / Images

Coming into the series, Andrew Strauss's men needed to beat India by a margin of two or more Tests to usurp the No.1 ICC Test ranking from the latter.

That is precisely what they ended up doing, a comprehensive innings and 242 runs win at Edgbaston on Saturday, their third in succession (following Lord's and Trent Bridge) ensuring the same.

As he began explaining his triumph, Strauss was a content man.

"That we wanted to be the top Test nation was never hidden," explained England's captain.

"For us this series was about measuring our side against the best Test team in the world and trying to beat them to the top spot," he continued.

"I am proud of the way our guys played and did so well to win the series. We were very close to our best."

Image: Andrew Strauss and Graeme Swann celebrates after winning the third Test against India
Photographs: Getty Images

'We have dominated the series'

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Strauss was quick to dismiss that the series was a cakewalk, as the 3-0 score line indicates. 

"In home conditions, you got to back yourself to beat any side," he explained, adding, "In the first Tests (Lord's and Trent Bridge), we had to work hard for our victories. There were moments when we were down and could have faltered.

"However, this Test we have dominated.

"Overall, we played some really outstanding cricket in this series so far."

Now that the immediate goal was achieved, Strauss was clear that his team will now focus on their long term goal.

"We are very satisfied by what we have achieved in this series. But just because the rankings say we are the No.1 team doesn't mean our job is over.

"It would be arrogant for us to assume that we can waltz our way and everything will be hunky dory for us hereafter.

"We have to try and win as many series' as possible. We have to be determined to stay there," he said. 

Image: Kevin Pietersen celebrates with teammates after England beat India

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Fresh challenge

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The England captain admitted that the top ranking brings with it added responsibility and a fresh challenge.

"There's going to be stern test for us in the future, especially when we are playing away from home," explained Strauss.

"But we are up for it. We haven't reached the end of the road yet. No.1 can go away as quickly as it arrives."

Besides, the ultimate goal of his side, Strauss was categorical about another facet -- putting the team before an individual.

"Any achievement we have made as a side has been very collective," he explained, adding, "Individuals have been secondary to how the team is functioning.

"We aren't interested in individual milestones and accolades."

That, in essence, defined why England has reached where they have.

Image: England players react after the win

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