Johannesburg: England captain Alastair Cook described Tuesday`s Ashes loss as the lowest point of his career, but rejected suggestions his team`s flaccid defence was a sign it was in terminal decline, according to reports.
According to Sport24, the tourists went into the series as firm favourites after their 3-0 victory in the series in England earlier this year.
Even Cook conceded that they were completely outplayed in the first two Tests in Brisbane and Adelaide, and again in Perth - where they lost by 150 runs to give the home side an unbeatable 3-0 lead with two Tests left to play, the report said.
Cook, who suffered his first series defeat as skipper, said he realised there would be a detailed autopsy of the team`s failure.
He accepted that key England players were down on their best form in the first three Tests, but said it was premature to read anything more long-term into it, the report added.
Cook pointed to the Australians, with veterans like Brad Haddin and Mitchell Johnson playing some of the best cricket of their careers, as evidence that form can be turned around by experienced players, the report further said.
Cook answered `Yes` when asked if the Ashes defeat was the lowest moment of his career but did not elaborate, the report mentioned.