Andrew Strauss said he was proud of England‘s Investec Ashes triumph but said more challenges lie in wait this winter with Alastair Cook‘s men due in the UAE and South Africa. Andrew Strauss has also urged Ian Bell to continue his Test  career if he still has the desire to play international cricket. Bell, a 33-year-old veteran of 115 Tests, is now the senior member of the England side and has been on the winning side in five Ashes campaigns. But speaking after Australia’s innings and 42-run win in the fifth Test at The Oval on Sunday completed a 3-2 series win for England, Bell indicated, during a brief BBC radio interview, he would “take stock” of his future in the weeks ahead, reports AFP.

Strauss said Cook’s side, who face tough series away to Pakistan and South Africa before the end of the year, still had room for improvement. “I’m incredibly proud of the players, support staff and families for going through some tough times,” said Strauss, a former Ashes-winning skipper. “There’s lot of pressure and an Ashes series is one of those where you’re either a hero or a zero. The guys managed to win the important sessions at important times. It’s nice to be sitting in the background taking some sort of reflected glory from it but it was all down to Alastair Cook and his guys. But we’re very conscious this is a young, developing side and there’s a lot of hard work to do. The final Test showed to everyone that we’re not the finished article by any means…but it’s nice to be Ashes winners,” he added, reports AFP.

With imputs from AFP.