Lavishing high praise over a "complete team effort" from England in their astonishing 3-0 Test series whitewash over Sri Lanka, skipper Joe Root has said that he is extremely satisfied and "proud" of each and every member and his contribution towards the great win.
England eventually completed a hard-fought 42-run victory in the third and final Test of the series at the SSC, Colombo, and finished off the series having perfectly reaffirmed their status as the better side.
"Proud of everyone, brilliant performance from the whole squad. I'm not surprised (by the results), we knew we were capable of winning here but the consistency shows a real learning within the squad," Root said at the post-match presentation ceremony on Monday, November 26.
Root also emphasized how employing sound tactics while batting on turning pitches and showcasing the ability to consistently take wickets, with spinners Jack Leach, Moeen Ali and Adl Rashid bagging 38 wickets among them, proved to be the decisive factor in the series.
Sri Lanka hasn't regressed any further, just that when they are up against a side that tackles spin, either through ability like India or on methods like England, they'll struggle even at home.
Root said, "There's a lot of ability within the squad and we can keep improving. We've been able to bring different guys in, and one of the big secrets of our success has been being able to pick a team that can take 20 wickets and post scores that could put pressure on the opponents."
"You are only as good as your team. You can't look past that. The experienced players have taken the extra responsibility and the guys have stepped up. It's been exceptional."
"It's been a complete team effort, it's been a great tour. I'm proud of my team. Everything about this trip has been magnificent," he added.
Man of the series for his 257 runs, despite making his debut ahead of the first Test at Galle, wicketkeeper-batsman Ben Foakes also talked about his magnificent all-round exploits for the team and said, "It was amazing, it's been a crazy few weeks. The Sri Lankan guys played really well, especially in this game. Felt very hard (keeping wickets)."
"I have been here six times so knowing the conditions and that experience helped. So much has happened in the last few weeks. I'll see what happens, will just go with the flow and I'm here for the ride," he signed off.
Having inflicted eight wins from their last nine matches, England jumped massively in the ICC Test rankings to No.2, behind India.
(Inputs from CricketNext)