Alastair Cook completed his first assignment as England captain with a NatWest Series victory at Old Trafford.
The doubters appeared to be everywhere when Cook's era as one-day international skipper began at The Oval at the end of last month, but 298 runs later - average 74.50, strike rate 96.75 - he could be forgiven a smile of satisfaction as he reflected on a series win over Sri Lanka, the team who knocked England out of this year's World Cup in a 10-wicket trouncing in Colombo.
The hosts sneaked the series decider by 16 runs at Old Trafford and Cook said: "Once we got through that powerplay and they still needed seven-and-a-half an over and we had five overs of spin, I was quite confident. But we still needed to get (Angelo) Mathews out without him really doing the damage."
In a curious match, wickets fell in dramatic clusters but in the end England's 268 for nine proved to be enough. Cook remained calm throughout, and the win was secured when Jade Dernbach took Sri Lanka's last two wickets in successive balls at the start of the 49th over
Mathews (62) was ninth out, Tim Bresnan taking the catch off a Dernbach slower ball to add to his own three for 49 at the top of the order in a contest set up for England by Cook and Craig Kieswetter's hectic opening partnership and then half-centuries from Jonathan Trott (72) and Eoin Morgan (57).
Sri Lanka fought back via Dinesh Chandimal (54), Kumar Sangakkara, Mathews and Jeevan Mendis - but ultimately not quite well enough.
As for the points Cook has proven to his critics, he said: "When you pull on an England shirt, people are always going to have their own opinions.
"I don't do it to prove anyone wrong. I do it for the satisfaction that we got in that final half-hour of the game, and you can't replicate that. That's why you play the game.
"That's the first time I've had a really tight scenario in my eight games as one-day captain, and I thought we handled it well. I think the most pleasing aspect is the way we fought back from 2-1 down in the series.
"Everyone was writing us off, and we've played well in these past two games in all conditions on spinning wickets and flat wickets."