England v India, fifth Test: Captain Alastair Cook elated with 3-1 series triumph over India
By Joe Drabble
Last Updated: 18/08/14 9:54am
England captain Alastair Cook paid tribute to "an amazing turnaround" from his players after wrapping up a 3-1 Test series win over India on day three at the Kia Oval.
India’s second-ever Test victory at Lord's left England trailing 1-0 with three Tests to play but Cook’s charges bounced back in style with three crushing victories in Southampton, Manchester and south London to win the Investec Trophy.
After seeing his bowlers bundle India out for just 94 to win by an innings and 244 runs at the Oval, Cook was quick to divert the praise on to his team-mates.
He told Sky Sports: "(It was) An amazing turnaround. After Lord's to have won like we've won the last three games, the guys can take a huge amount of credit. Obviously the coaching staff Peter Moores and Paul Farbrace, they’ve made a massive difference.
"All summer before we won at Southampton we played cricket in patches. We played good cricket and then let it go in an hour or so. To maintain the pressure on India like we did in these three games, that last hour here showed that – they (India) crumbled at the end but that was down to relentless pressure."
Cook also thanked his team-mates for standing by him after a run of 10 Tests without victory had prompted calls for him to step down as captain.
He added: "It's great to have the support of the guys throughout the tough times and it makes it all worthwhile now.
"When you score runs with our bowling attack, in these conditions, you make yourselves hard to beat."
Cook was keen to let his players bask in the glory of their latest win before thinking about their next Test assignment in the Caribbean in April.
"It is a shame," he said of the lack of imminent Test action. "They'll be very different conditions in West Indies. But I don't think we can worry about that.
"We've played a lot of Test cricket recently and we'll have a lot after when we start again in West Indies.
"We've got to enjoy tonight and then look at the difference between how we've gone from not playing good cricket to playing as good cricket as we have the last three games, and as soon as we get back into this mode trying to start there again."
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni acknowledged his team had fallen way short of the mark with the bat.
"I think today's batting was reflective of a batting order that has lost a lot of confidence over a period of time," he said at the post-match ceremony.
He added: "Many youngsters have not played over here. Also not many have played Test cricket outside the sub-continent. It's a very important moment for them. They'll learn and in coming years when they come back they'll be much better."