Stuart Broad praises Andy Flower and Andrew Strauss for England rise
Monday 15 August 2011
Stuart Broad has heaped praise on England's coach and captain, Andy Flower and Andrew Strauss, for making them the number one Test side in the world.
England ascended to the summit on the back of an innings victory over India at Edgbaston which saw them take a 3-0 lead in the four-game series and leapfrog their opponents in the rankings.
That came from a low point when they lost a series in the West Indies in 2009 and sat sixth in the world following the acrimony surrounding the departures of coach Peter Moores and captain Kevin Pietersen.
"It is pretty special to get there from sixth place so quickly, just as it was special to be on the field on Saturday when Sreesanth poked a catch off Tim Bresnan to Kevin Pietersen in the gully," Broad said in today's Daily Mail.
"Edgbaston is always a great place to play but it was amazing at that moment. All I could hear from the crowd before that last wicket was: 'Stand up if you're number one'. Brilliant.
"A huge amount of credit for this has to go to Flower and Andrew Strauss. It is the players who step on the field and have to be judged but the amount of preparation and hard work that has gone into this achievement is phenomenal.
"An England player has to front up to the press at the end of each day's play and we were saying as we sat in the dressing room on Saturday night that each member of our backroom staff should take their turn to do that instead of us at the Oval this week.
"That way perhaps people would find out how much they all do, but sadly they did not seem too keen.
"It is the little things that make the difference. The moments that change Test matches and series. The shows of strength that have said to our opponents, 'This England team are a powerful and ruthless bunch and we're hunting you down'."
The Edgbaston Test was in some doubt last week when the rioting that hit London over the weekend spread to Birmingham.
Broad said: "Our week started when we saw some kids in hoodies roaming the streets outside our hotel in Birmingham and it has clearly been a very difficult time.
"The feeling that the country seems to have taken pleasure from what we have done since then is a warm one."
Broad also admitted he feared for his place in the side ahead of the first Test at Lord's.
The 25-year-old was woefully out of form in the series against Sri Lanka and there were many calling for him to be dropped, but he repaid the selectors' faith by getting back to his best with bat and ball.
"Yes, I think I came close to being dropped before the first Test," said Broad.
"When Flower told me I was playing at Lord's I almost felt a sense of release because I felt I was owed a break after injury and not picking up the wickets I felt my bowling deserved.
"Now I have taken 21 wickets in this series and scored a few runs so I hope I have repaid that faith that was shown me."
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