England refocus after reaching the summit

LONDON, (Reuters) – England have already set new  goals after reaching the coveted number one spot in the world  rankings at the expense of India who face an unenviable task in  the fourth test starting today.

India, soundly thrashed in the first three tests, have only  pride to play for in a match which a capacity crowd at the Oval  will use to acclaim their heroes.

“I always think it is very dangerous to hold on to what you  have got,” reflected coach Andy Flower after his team destroyed  India in the third test at Edgbaston.

“We used that goal, to be number one, as a motivational tool  that drove us in training and in matches. Now that we have  achieved that, what (captain Andrew) Strauss and I don’t want to  do is just hang on.

“That’s not a very exciting way to go about our business. We  are going to have to reset out goals,”

Flower and Strauss have taken England from the depths of a  series defeat in West Indies at the start of 2009 to successive  Ashes victories followed by a ruthless demolition of World Cup  champions India.

Their concentration on short-term goals, a disciplined work  ethic and rigorous attention to detail has propelled England to  the top of the rankings table and Flower is determined that his  men do not rest of their hard-won laurels.

“Now we are ranked number one people will be very hungry to  knock us off that perch, there is no doubt about that,” he said.

“It is one thing being good for a short period of time but  having a side that delivers some special results and has some  special times together that they will remember for the rest of  their lives, that will be a much better thing to look back on  than a few victories here and there.

“This winter we go to play against two countries that the  last time England toured, we lost. We want to go and play  Pakistan and Sri Lanka away from home and win those series.

“Ignoring the ranking, those series will have their own  importance.

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