Mohali, Oct 21: With the series out of their bag after losing the third ODI on Thursday, England captain Alastair Cook blamed poor fielding as the reason for his side's disappointing performance against India in the ongoing five-match rubber.
England came into the series with loads of confidence on the back of their stunning whitewash over India at home this summer.
But since landing here, nothing clicked for the visitors as they lost the first two ODIs convincingly in Hyderabad (126 runs) and Delhi (8 wickets) and then suffered a five-wicket defeat at the PCA stadium to lose the series to India, billed as a 'revenge series'.
"It was an improved performance from the last two games. We played better but that wasn't enough to win the game. We made mistakes on the field in these three games. Our mistakes on the field cost us 20-25 runs today," a disappointed Cook said at the post-match press conference.
"We made too many mistakes against a world-class side and that's frustrating," he added.
After scoring 298 for four in the third ODI, England failed to defend the score with India romping home with five wickets in hand and four balls to spare.
"The score of 300 was decent one. It was defendable but mistakes on the field cost us the match."
Defending the challenging total, England committed numerous errors on the field with wicket-keeper Craig Kieswetter guilty on two occasions, a dropped chance of Virat Kohli and then a missed run out opportunity of Ravindra Jadeja, who in captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni's company, brought India home.
"We prepared for the series as well as we could but just couldn't deliver on the field," said Cook.
Down 0-3, the English skipper said it would be a challenge to lift the side for the remaining games of the series.
"Two more games to go but it's tough to pull up when you know the series is lost," Cook said.
He praised Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, terming him as one of the best finishers of the game.
"(Finishing abilities) that's why MS (Dhoni) had a fantastic career. He made his career by finishing off games," he said.
Cook also had words of appreciation for Jonathan Trott, who guided the England innings with a well-crafted 98.
"Trotty (Trott) played the anchor role. We needed batsmen to play around him."
The English skipper observed that in the absence of Stuart Broad (injured) and James Anderson (rested), the young English attack failed to rise to the occasion.
"Broady (Broad) can't be here (because of injury) and we decided to rest Jimmy (Anderson) as part of our long-term planning. It was an excellent opportunity for other bowlers to perform in Indian conditions," he signed off.