England newcomers scramble for stumps after enjoying first taste of Test victory

England's Moeen Ali, second right, is congratulated by his team-mates after taking the final wicket on day five.

England's Moeen Ali, second right, is congratulated by his team-mates after taking the final wicket on day five.

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Alastair Cook hailed a near-perfect performance from England yesterday as they recorded their first Test win in almost a year.

Victory by 266 runs over India in the third Investec Test at the Ageas Bowl ended a 10-Test run without a win – a sequence which featured only two draws.

Cook said: “It was a good performance right from day one, I don’t think we lost a session.

“Every single one of the XI has contributed to a great win.

“Getting 570 (in the first innings) was a great start, then we bowled them out, got runs quickly and put pressure on them then got them out again.”

In an inexperienced line-up, the likes of Moeen Ali, Sam Robson, Yorkshire’s Gary Ballance and Chris Woakes had not tasted Test victory before.

Cook added: “There was a bit of a scramble for the stumps for their first win, people will remember that for a long time.”

The captain’s much-needed innings of 95 in the first innings not only set the tone for big hundreds from Ballance and Ian Bell and a rapid 85 from debutant wicketkeeper Jos Buttler, but eased questions over his own form.

“I said at Lord’s I thought my game was heading back in the right direction and to back it up, I’m incredibly pleased,” Cook added.

“I was frustrated I didn’t get the hundred in the first innings but to get 160 runs (in the match), I’ll certainly take that.”

James Anderson was named man of the match after taking 5-53 in the first innings and seven wickets in the match, while spinner Moeen wrapped up the Indian second innings with 6-67.

“His bowling has come on leaps and bounds from the beginning of the summer,” Cook said of the Worcestershire all-rounder.

“Credit to Mo, he’s worked incredibly hard.

“He’s a bit part-time backing up (Saeed) Ajmal at Worcestershire but he’s bowled a huge amount in the nets with the guys here.”

Scoreboard: Page 22.

Match report: Page 23.

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