In 2006, Nagpur, the British team toured India for a Test series. Under the leadership of Andrew Flintoff, England looked like a balanced competent side albeit the focus was on southpaw Alastair Cook who had made his way through the ranks. Cook was known to be a player who could tackle spin and tackling Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh was the need of the hour in the Indian conditions.
As reported by Sportskeeda, on his debut, Cook displayed class, eventually; he went on to do It for the next 12 years. His exquisite timing spoke of his talent but his technique was questioned. With only two major shots in his armoury, Cook marched on. He played the cut shot on the wide short ball and played the flick shot when the ball was bowled on the pads, his pull shots brought occasional delight to the eyes.
The English cricketer walked on to the field with his bat for the last time for his 161st Final Test Match on 07th September. He decided to retire from International cricket earlier this week.
He was greeted with a guard of honour from the Indian team, a handshake from Captain, Virat Kohli and a standing ovation at from the crowd at Oval as a mark of respect.
The 33 year old batsman, has played 161 tests and is England’s highest run-getter with a score of 12,254 runs at an average of 44.88 with 32 hundreds and 56 half centuries. Incidentally, his highest test score of 294 runs has been against India at Birmingham during the 2011 series. He also led his team to a famous 201 Test series win in India in the year 2012, which marked one of the highlights of his captaincy. Cook did not just dawn the hat of a captain, but also scored 176 at Motera, 122 at Mumbai and 190 at Kolkata, leading from the front. However, this year, his performance has not been as expected as he scored only 109 runs in seven innings across four Test matches. He was also under review, which perhaps could be one of the reasons for his early retirement announcements.
He said in an ECB statement,
“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”
Good wishes poured in from former colleagues and friends for the outgoing batsman:
— Nick Compton (@thecompdog) September 3, 2018
When I met him to write this article, it was 3 days after he'd won the Ashes. He must have been exhausted. Wasting his time with a batting clown like me must have been the last thing he wanted to do. But how kind he was! How generous! https://t.co/jiDkubUfoD #AlastairCook
— Tom Holland (@holland_tom) September 3, 2018
Congrats on an exceptional career #AlastairCook. @englandcricket will lose not only an outstanding player but an outstanding human being who gave everything for his team & team mates. Was an honour to share the field with you Chef! We will now all see the huge hole he leaves…
— Matt Prior (@MattPrior13) September 3, 2018
Congrats #AlastairCook on your glorious Career mate.. No Doubt you are one of the best Englishman @englandcricket legend👍🏻 indeed I have always Enjoyed playing against you as a tough competitor! Good luck in your next 2nd Innings! @ECB_cricket pic.twitter.com/Ykgh9imeU9
— Faisal Iqbal🏏🇵🇰 (@FaisalIqbalCric) September 3, 2018
— Adam Mountford (@tmsproducer) September 3, 2018
#AlastairCook one of the greatest batsman produced by #England, retires from Test Cricket at the end of the #Oval Test against India. Cook made his debut and will also play his last test against #India. A stylish left hand batsman, played 161 Tests & scored over 12,000 Runs. pic.twitter.com/S2rSCedMDT
— Sreedhar Pillai (@sri50) September 3, 2018
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) September 3, 2018
Farewell #AlastairCook, a true ambassador of Test cricket. Sixth highest Test run-getter (12254), averaging just below 45. Has given England many celebrated wins as captain and player.
— Roha Nadeem (@RohaNadym) September 3, 2018
Cook Vs Tendulkar
An Interesting analysis has been done by Sportskeeda between the cricket maestro Sachin Tendulkar who scored 15921 runs in his Test career and Alastair Cook who left with 3667 runs away from Tendulkar’s mark. How much time would Cook take to score nearly 3650 runs? According to his career average of 45, Cook would take 81 innings to score 3668 runs to surpass Tendulkar’s tally of runs. On an average, the English side plays 12 Tests a year thus giving Cook 24 innings(considering two innings per game) in a year.
According to these rough calculations it would have taken Cook three and a half years to surpass Tendulkar’s tally. At the age of 37, Cook would’ve overtaken Tendulkar. His best year in Test cricket was 2015 where he scored 1364 runs. With this average of 54.56, Cook would’ve achieved the milestone 67 innings.