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Strauss and Flower win Morris praise

Investec Test Series

Andy Flower

Andy Flower basks in the glow of Ashes glory, a far cry from the "tough times" England experienced early in the year

Hugh Morris, managing director of England cricket, hailed the key roles played by Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower in England's magnificent Ashes triumph.

Captain Strauss and team director Flower orchestrated a 197-run victory at the Brit Oval to secure a 2-1 series win and wrest the urn from Australia’s grasp.

They were the central figures behind England’s turnaround in fortunes, having been appointed in January in the wake of the shock dual departures of Kevin Pietersen and Peter Moores as captain and coach respectively.

“I think we’ve come a long way over the last eight or nine months,” said Morris.

“The way Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower have led the team and the team have responded is fantastic, and I’m a very, very proud person to work with them.

“They were very tough times at Christmas, there’s no getting away from that. It’s been difficult and challenging but often you have to go through those periods to come out the other end.

“I was lucky enough to be in the team hotel last night. You could just see the boys were absolutely elated with their performance.”

Jonathan Trott’s fine display on debut - he made 41 and 119 - augurs well for players in county cricket hoping to take the next step up.

“I feel we’ve got some really good young players coming through,” said Morris. “It’s really important to have a deep talent pool. There’s a real incentive for players playing in county cricket now.

“What we have to do now is go back there (Australia) in 15-16 months and plan and prepare well. We don’t want to make the mistake again. We know what happened there last time (England lost 5-0).

Andrew Strauss & Andy Flower

Andrew Strauss and Flower deserve much credit for their part in England's success, according to Hugh Morris

“We have a very busy schedule so the amount of preparation time is really important. The players must follow their fitness regimes. That’s the culture we want; we want to keep them fit and on the park for as long as we can.”

Morris insisted the celebrations last night will not be too boisterous, though, with a busy schedule ahead.

He added: “We’ve got a one-day international with Ireland in a few days’ time, two Twenty20 internationals, seven one-day internationals, so we’ve got a pretty busy programme.

"We’ll be looking forward to the challenges of those games.”

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