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Last Updated: Thursday, 1 June 2006, 15:53 GMT 16:53 UK
England need to be mean - Russell
Jack Russell
Russell says Australia would not let chances slip
Former star Jack Russell says England need to develop a ruthless streak if they are to be the world's best side.

Andrew Flintoff's side go into the final Test with Sri Lanka at Trent Bridge with a 1-0 lead.

"Watching the last couple of matches I think England need to be a bit more ruthless," said Russell, who played in 54 Test matches for England.

"When you've got the Aussies in front of you, the instinct to try and finish them off is there in every ball."

Russell admitted: "It's a tough thing to do because you've got to generate that edge yourself.

"Its harder to generate your own ruthlessness - but that is what makes a truly great team.

"In their pomp the Aussies hardly let anyone off the hook ever - in fact they enjoyed squeezing the opposition down to a pulp - and that's the level we need to get to.

"That's not a criticism at all, it's a compliment if anything - this England team have worked hard to get within sniffing distance of the very top of the world game.

"I think developing a clinical edge against every side they play, no matter who they are, is the next step in their development to be the best side on the planet."

Russell, who still holds the world record for the number of dismissals in a Test match, has been back out in the middle himself recently as part of Sport Relief...Goes All Out For India.

Together with a team of celebrities he took on three sides in India and also saw how money donated to Sport Relief is being used to change lives on the sub-continent.

He added: "It was a really amazing trip in many ways. The cricket was great and some of the lads really got into the competitive side of it, which was great to see.

"But also some of the things we witnessed around what Sport Relief does out there were both disturbing and uplifting. It's something I'll never forget."

Watch Sport Relief Goes All Out For India on BBC ONE on June 7th and 8th at 9pm.

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