Strauss pat for ruthless mentality

England overcame the loss of about 130 overs in the match to still thrash Sri Lanka by an innings and 14 runs — their fourth innings victory in five Tests.

The Sri Lankans, with three batsmen in their line-up averaging more than 50, capitulated to 82 all out in a fraction over two hours on the final evening of the match. "We were keen to press for a victory but we thought it would be a long shot," Strauss told reporters. "I was really impressed by the guys' intensity because in that situation it is easy to just go through the motions.

"These are the things that test you as a side: how desperately do you want to win? I think we showed that we really wanted it and we got what we deserved. I was very impressed.

We showed quite a lot of ruthlessness in Australia this winter," he added in reference to their 3-1 Ashes victory. "And this was another good example of that."  Man-of-the-match Jonathan Trott, whose Test average soared to 66.77 after compiling a painstaking 203, said he had observed a sense of ambition around the team as early as 2009, when he came into the side.

"I had a taste of it when I played for Warwickshire in a warm-up game against England before the 2009 Ashes — you could see there was a unity about them then," Trott said.

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