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Flower praises England players for series win

Published: Tuesday, August 23, 2011, 14:26 [IST]
 
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Ind series reminds Flower of Ashes'09

London, Aug 23: England coach Andy Flower has compared his side's 4-0 whitewash of India in the just-concluded Test series to the 2009 Ashes victory. He also hailed the players for the "extraordinary" motivation and hard work they had put in to achieve the feat.

England completed a Test series whitewash of India yesterday at the Oval, the same venue which two years ago had provided the settings for their celebration of a 2-1 Ashes victory over Australia.

"It reminds me of the Ashes in 2009, there's a similar atmosphere. It was maybe a bit of an anti-climax because we were 3-0 up but it's a great moment for them," Flower said.

"The Ashes are special for their own reasons, and for the importance the English public and the Australian public give to it, but it's also something special to be playing India. These are brilliant moments," he told 'Sky Sports'.

He even found similarity between the series victory over India and the 2009 Ashes win under his own guidance.

"We like listening to (Jerusalem) before each day's play and to have it while they're doing a lap of honour is very special," said the former Zimbabwe captain.

On the work which has gone into his side's ascent to number one spot in Test rankings, Flower said, "The players have worked extraordinarily hard to get their skills and their conditioning up, and they walk over that boundary rope and make good decisions under pressure. Also really good leadership from Strauss, you see that in all facets, and really good work by (batting coach) Graham Gooch and some of our support staff, you can see that in some big first-innings scores and the fielding standards."

England yesterday defeated India by an innings and eight runs in the fourth and final Test at the Oval in a series where the home team's previous margins of victory were 196 runs, 319 runs and an innings and 242 runs.

PTI

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