England well placed to be World No.1 side: Strauss

July 27th, 2011 - 4:17 pm ICT by IANS  

London, July 27 (IANS) England captain Andrew Strauss believes the victory at Lord’s in the first of the four Tests has placed the hosts in a good position to leap ahead of India and become the world’s No.1 side.

England defeated India by 196 runs Monday in the landmark 2000th Test, which was also the 100th between the two sides.

The second Test begins at Trent Bridge Friday and the hosts are aware they can replace India at the top of the International Cricket Council (ICC) rankings by winning the four-match series by two or more matches.

“To be number one you have to grab your opportunities and I think we did that very well in this game,” Strauss was quoted as saying in the Telegraph.

“It’s the first of a four-match series but we’ve demonstrated that when we play well we’re a match for anyone. Now we just have to play well again.

“We are aware that this is just the opening salvo in the series, but Lord’s is a hard wicket as the game goes on and the performance was outstanding.

“They were five down at tea (on day five) and we had to work very hard to open up an end. Once we did that we finished them off brilliantly.

“Looking at our first innings total (474 for eight declared), that was a magnificent performance too. Kevin (Pietersen) was mainly responsible for that - it was one of the great innings I have seen since being involved in the side,” he said.

Strauss was full of praise for Stuart Broad, who was fighting for a place in the final XI after his unimpressive showing against Sri Lanka and with a fit again Tim Bresnan
backed by many as a better choice.

England’s new Twenty20 captain justified the faith shown in him by Strauss and team director Andy Flower with a match figures of seven for 94 and a vital 74 not out in the second innings, as he put in his best showing since the 2009 Ashes.

“Stuart was outstanding. When your place in side is called into question it’s a big test of character as much as anything,” Strauss said.

“Stuart showed immense character over five days. He bowled very well and his second innings 70 was crucial to the outcome of the game. He showed his class here and it is a timely reminder to everyone of what a great talent he is.”

England have named an unchanged 12 for the second Test in Nottingham.

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