Reaching No. 1 is not the end of the journey: Swann

England’s off-spinner Graeme Swann says they want to be remembered as one of the best England teams ever Getty Images

London: Aug 4, 2011

After thrashing the No. 1 Test team in the first two games of the four-match Test series, England might have moved an edge closer to snatching away the numero uno status from India, but off-spinner Graeme Swann said his side is keen on having “a long-term era of success.”

“Reaching No. 1 in the world is not the end of the journey. It will be only the beginning,” Swann said.

“We want to create a dynasty, a long-term era of success and to be remembered as one of the best England teams ever,” the tweaker added.

England have already taken a 2-0 lead in the four-match rubber, they look in total control against an injury-hit Indian side.

Dhoni’s men will have to put an extraordinary effort in the remaining two matches at Edgbaston and The Oval in the third and the fourth Tests, respectively, to salvage their reputation and hold on to the No. 1 spot.

England will replace India at the top if they manage to clinch the series with a margin of two or more matches.

“We are not there yet, of course, and our prime objective at the moment is making sure we are fully focused for the third Test at Edgbaston next Wednesday,” Swann wrote in his column for The Sun.

“We must make sure we win the series from being 2-0 up and things such as rankings take care of themselves.

“The likes of Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad and Ian Bell are well under the age of 30. It gives England the chance to be a top side for a long time to come,” he said.

On the recent run-out episode of Ian Bell, Swann felt the Indians were right in withdrawing their appeal.

“It was blatantly obvious Belly (Ian Bell) wasn’t attempting a run and the umpire was about to hand over the bowler’s sweater.

“You could run out a batsman 20 times a day when he goes gardening or that sort of thing,” the bowler insisted.

Bell was controversially given run-out when he left the crease after completing a run, assuming that the ball was dead and tea had been called.

The incident happened when Bell, after completing the third run off a shot by Eoin Morgan on the final ball before the tea break walked off the crease, assuming that the ball had crossed the boundary.

But Praveen Kumar made a diving effort at boundary and threw the ball at Abhinav Mukund who clipped the bails at the striker’s end.

The Indians appealed and the batsman was given out after replays showed that the ball had not crossed the boundary.

But, in a magnanimous gesture, India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni withdrew his appeal against Bell at the tea break, allowing him to bat again.