Strauss up for the fight

Andy Flower’s team moved one up in the series following a five-wicket win in the first Test at Lord’s.

The match proved to be a more keenly-contest affair than many expected and Strauss claims England were “relieved to a certain extent” to finally secure the victory following a late fight back.

The West Indies” > will be fighting tooth and nail to level the series in Nottingham and Strauss knows that working hard once again will be the key to another potential England success.

“The first and most obvious lesson was it was hard work, actually that’s always the case when it comes to Test match cricket,” he toldSky Sports.

“It’s hard work to get on top of the competition. It’s hard work to finally nail that final nail into the coffin. The West Indies put up a really good fight.

“There were times there where they made life really difficult for us and I suppose we’re relieved to a certain extent that we were able to get over the line and win that game.“We’re going to have to do it again this week if we want to win. It’s all about keeping our feet on the ground and making sure we’re willing to do the hard graft necessary to get on top of the side ahead.”

Alastair Cook” > and Ian Bell” > steered England to victory on Monday with a 132-run partnership, although Strauss felt everyone made a contribution in the Lord’s success.

“There was a time where we were under a bit of pressure and Alastair Cook and Ian Bell dealt with that very well and it is important,” he continued.

“It’s always important to win in those circumstances and it gives you move confidence going into the next time you’re faced with a situation like that.

“There were some really good performances from our side. Stuart Broad” > bowled exceptionally well. Most of the batters got a score in the game so I think we feel in pretty good form heading into this Test match, but we don’t want to get ahead of ourselves. It’s going to be very hard work this week. Every Test match here is very hard fought.”

Strauss’ 122 in the first innings was his first Test century for 18 months and the 35-year-old is now hoping to continue to score runs consistently this summer.

“I said at the time it was a bit of a monkey off my back because people kept talking about it,” he added.

“I’m more conscious than ever I need to contribute consistently so it’s not just about getting one score it’s about doing it again. I’ll be attempting to do that this week.”

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