And the inevitable has happened. There was constant pressure on Alastair Cook to perform in the ongoing Test series against India. He kept failing and the pressure kept mounting. The English management kept defending him despite his failures but the man himself has decided that the time has come.
Alastair Cook has decided to retire from international cricket after the completion of the India Test series. It means that the former captain would step onto the field to represent the country one last time. The fifth Test of the series at the Oval would mark the end of Cook’s illustrious career.
“I know the timing is right”
The opener today made the announcement. He mentioned that he has given everything for the country and there’s nothing left in the tank. He expressed his gratitude for playing alongside some of the greats of English cricket. It was the hardest decision of his life and he felt that the time was right to take it.
“After much thought and deliberation over the last few months, I have decided to announce my retirement from international cricket at the end of this Test series against India. Although it is a sad day, I can do so with a big smile on my face knowing I have given everything and there is nothing left in the tank,” said Cook as per the official website of the England and Wales Cricket Board.
“I have achieved more than I could have ever imagined and feel very privileged to have played for such a long time alongside some of the greats of the English game. The thought of not sharing the dressing room, again, with some of my teammates was the hardest part of my decision, but I know the timing is right,” added Cook.
Cook made his Test debut in 2006 in Nagpur and then went on become the premier batsman for England. Having scored 12254 runs from 160 Tests, he is the leading run-getter for England in Test cricket. His 32 centuries are the most for the country. Apart from Tests, he also played 92 ODIs and 4 T20s. He did not flourish in white-ball cricket but proved to be a wonderful batsman in the longest format of the game.
He was once being backed by many to reach Sachin Tendulkar’s record of most runs in Tests. But the last couple of years haven’t been fruitful for the left-hander. The 33-year-old managed to score just 109 runs in 4 Tests against India recently. The string of low scores triggered the decision to quit. Now that he is leaving the game, he thanked his supporters and Graham Gooch.
“There are too many people to thank individually, but a special mention must go to the Barmy Army and all supporters for their constant encouragement for the team and also a special mention to Graham Gooch.
“As a seven-year-old, I queued for his autograph outside Essex County Cricket Club and years later was so fortunate to have him mentoring me. Graham was my sounding board, especially in the early years of my career, spending hour after hour throwing balls at me with his dog stick. He made me realize you always need to keep improving whatever you are trying to achieve, Alastair Cook added.