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Swann spins superb England to series whitewash over India but Strauss still not satisfied
England have been better side, admits Indian opener, but winning away will be their 'biggest challenge'
Cricketers, at least those with ambition, love to give the selectors a headache. Or so they say. What they really mean, of course, is that they would like to stake such a rock solid claim that no one with an ounce of common sense could possibly look in any other direction. Step forward Ian Bell
There was a time when playing Ireland across the water would be nothing much more than a jolly for England's cricketers. But no longer – and certainly not after a certain World Cup result that did wonders for the sale of the dark stuff all around the globe.
Sourav Ganguly, one of India's most successful captains, believes his old team sunk to a new low earlier this week. But he has urged fans and critics alike to show them some patience – and insisted that now is not the time to make sweeping changes.
For three years or more, everything that Mahendra Singh Dhoni touched turned to gold. These days, everything he tries to touch seems to end up on the floor. Bit harsh? Perhaps, but these are worrying times for the man who did the impossible by replacing Sachin Tendulkar as India's most talked about cricketer.
The run machine is back in business. But, like England in general, Alastair Cook wants more success and to be part of a team that not only completes the journey to No 1 but also then achieves even greater things.
India 224 England 84-0
Even two draws now will be enough for England to replace India as the world's No 1 Test team after going 2-0 up in the four-match series with yesterday's thumping 319-run victory here.
England have come a long way in the last 12 years – from the world's worst Test team to virtual table-toppers, for a start. And while the reasons behind their climb are many and varied, the run-scoring ability of the lower order is an especially significant factor.
As England hammer India again to go 2-0 up in the series, confident captain insists 'we can be an even better side'
Ian Bell last night admitted that his naivety caused the run-out incident which threatened to cast a dark shadow over England's Test series against India. Bell was only allowed to resume a brilliant innings – having been given out for 137 – because M S Dhoni, the visiting captain, agreed to withdraw his side's appeal during the tea interval.
Like all the best pantomime villains, Sree Sreesanth invited the audience to boo him before the first intermission – an invitation that was happily accepted.
Stuart Broad and his fast bowling pals are "champing at the bit" to resume their work at Trent Bridge today. And while Broad admitted last night that India "are probably the happier of the two camps" he insisted that England still have a real chance of winning this second Test.
Graeme Swann paid a painful price for helping to revive England's innings when he was struck on the left hand by the delivery that finally dismissed him.
There is usually a good debate to be had about the world's best Test attack. South Africa's line-up, led by the electrifyingly quick Dale Steyn, have their supporters while India's backers can at present point to three bowlers among the top 10. For an hour or so yesterday, though, there was no argument whatsoever as England's quartet combined quite brilliantly.