The Ashes: James Anderson resting up ahead of Old Trafford Test match
James Anderson believes the comprehensive victory over Australia at Lord's leaves England in good stead.
Last Updated: 23/07/13 10:24pm
The home side's comprehensive 347-run victory over the tourists last week gives them a 2-0 series lead.
A win in the third Test at Old Trafford will seal the series and retain the urn ahead of this winter's return contest in Australia.
And Anderson believes England's sizable Lord's win has given them a vital edge for the matches to come.
"These are two huge series for us and it is important we got the first punch in," the 30-year-old pace bowler told Sky Sports.
"We are delighted to have won the first two games. It didn't matter how, we just had to win them.
"With the amount of cricket we have coming up against Australia we knew if we could get a big win in early and put the pressure on it will stand us in good stead for the coming months."
Lancashire player Anderson admitted he was excited to be playing on his home ground of Old Trafford in the third Test and predicted a similar surface to the ones seen at Trent Bridge and Lord's in the first two matches.
"I can't imagine it (the Old Trafford track) will be much different from what we have had in the first two games," said Anderson, who has taken 13 wickets so far in the series. "Swanny (spinner Graeme Swann) should be in the game at some point.
"Reverse swing should also play a part. It is common at Old Trafford and it is very dry with the weather we've been having."
England now have a 10-day rest period before the third Test gets under way on August 1 and Anderson believes it is vital that he and his team-mates recover properly.
"We have a rest now until the Old Trafford test and it is crucial we all get a good rest and we can reset mentally and look forward to the challenge ahead," Anderson added.
"It can be difficult to relax because it does take a lot out of you mentally. The first game at Trent Bridge was very emotional and very tight. It took a lot out of us.
"And back to back tests can be very challenging physically. Plus, everyone is talking about it but it is one of the challenges we have to deal with.
"If we do that and rest up I'm positive we can go into the Old Trafford Test in a positive frame of mind."