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August 29, 2013
Charlotte Edwards has achieved a huge amount in her career but she put regaining the Ashes as among her finest moments after England secured the multi-format series with a match to spare.
It has not been an easy few years for Edwards with England's standing having slip from their 2009 high point of being Ashes holders, World Twenty20 champions and World Cup winners. They relinquished the Ashes in 2011 and have since suffered narrow losses in the World Cup and World T20 at the hands of Australia.
Now they have an unassailable 10-4 lead in this summer's series having drawn the Test and bounced back emphatically from defeat in the first ODI at Lord's when there could have been a danger of the recent reversals overwhelming them.
"It's possibly one of my proudest moments in cricket," Edwards said. "After the winter we had, a disappointing winter, to come back in the way we have done and beat the world champions on home soil as convincing as we have done is really pleasing for us. I'm incredibly proud of all of the team and the way that they have bounced back."
Edwards insisted there had been no magical formula for this Ashes success which has come under new head coach Paul Shaw after Mark Lane stood down earlier his year
"The first thing is not to panic and that's one thing our new coaching staff have instilled in us," Edwards said. "We went away and worked on a few things and changed the order up a bit. The players bought into that and trained hard. We always believed we could beat this Australian team and that has been the biggest thing for us. We had complete belief in one another and everyone has contributed."
Their five-wicket victory at the Ageas Bowl was orchestrated by Lydia Greenway's unbeaten 80 - the highest score for England in Twenty20 - an innings which Edwards lauded as the greatest she had seen.
"This innings today was outstanding from her," she said. "I've seen many innings, Sarah Taylor included, and this was the best innings I've seen certainly in T20 cricket under the circumstances."
Greenway acknowledged she had not played better: "As Charlotte said, under the circumstances - the Ashes were there to be won and we didn't want to leave it until Durham. It's great to have contributed."
And, like the men, there were plans in place for a hefty celebrations although perhaps not in quite the way Alastair Cook's team finished at The Oval on Sunday evening. But the party, would have to start on the team bus as they headed to Gatwick for their flight up to the North East ahead of the final Twenty20 at Chester-le-Street on Saturday.
"I've just seen a load of Budweiser. It could be a good trip to Gatwick. It's important we celebrate. We've got a big game at Durham but you don't win the Ashes every day. Watch out the M3."
Such revelry was far from Jodie Fields's mind as another Australian captain was left to reflect on leaving an Ashes series empty-handed. "I'm pretty gutted to sit here and have lost the Ashes particularly after the men lost," Fields said. "We saw it as our responsibility to work hard to bring it home and now both Australian teams will go home without the Ashes."
Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfoFeeds: Andrew McGlashan
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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