Home > News >

Alastair Cook says would ‘never quit’ after series loss to Sri Lanka

Alastair Cook had a disappointing series with the bat in hand © Getty Images
Alastair Cook had a disappointing series as a batsman © Getty Images

By Julian Guyer

Leeds: Jun 25, 2014

Alastair Cook was adamant he would ‘never quit’ as England captain after the side suffered a fresh series reverse by a desperately narrow margin against Sri Lanka at Headingley on Tuesday.

It seemed England might escape with both a drawn match and series as No 11 James Anderson defied Sri Lanka’s bowlers for some 20 overs.

But with just two balls left in the match, he couldn’t evade a well-directed Shaminda Eranga bouncer and was caught at leg gully with Moeen Ali, who’d kept Sri Lanka at bay for six-and-half hours on 108 not out at the other end — his maiden Test ton.

Victory gave Sri Lanka the two-match series 1-0, after the Islanders themselves had battled to a draw with just one wicket standing at Lord’s, and saw a tearful Anderson, who blocked 54 balls before falling to the 55th he faced, sink to his knees in disbelief.

England, set 350 to win, had been bowled out for 249 and for a ‘new-look’ side there was the same old feeling of loss following the team’s 5-0 Ashes thrashing in Australia under Cook’s leadership.

- ‘Leave everything out there’ -

However, a defiant Cook insisted: “I’ve never quit on anything I’ve done. I’ve given it my all, all the time. Every 104 games I’ve played for England, I’ve left everything out there.

“It’s the same situation here. Until that moment somebody tells me they don’t want me to be captain, I’ll still be here,” the 29-year-old left-handed opening batsman added.

Cook, who has now gone 24 innings since compiling the last of his England record 25 Test hundreds, appeared to be close to the end of his tether even before this match when he said “something needs to be done” about the persistent criticism of his captaincy by Australia great Shane Warne.

But this match only served to increase the scrutiny of Cook’s tactics, with England failing to attack Angelo Mathews while the Sri Lanka skipper played a match-changing innings of 160 on Monday.

England’s main concern for much of Mathews’s century lay in getting Rangana Herath on strike, only for the left-arm spinner to make an invaluable 48 in a key eighth-wicket stand of 149 with his captain.

England then collapsed to 57 for five before the close of Monday’s fourth day, a position which left a rearguard action as their only realistic goal.

The form of Cook, one of a quartet of top-order batsmen undone by previously little-known paceman Dhammika Prasad, was labelled a “recipe for resignation” by ex-England skipper Geoffrey Boycott, himself a former Test opener.

However, Cook — speaking a fortnight before the start of a five-Test series at home to India — said: “I’m incredibly proud to be England captain.

“I’ve been selected to do it. If someone decides I’m not the right person for the job, and the results don’t justify me doing it, then fine.

“Until that moment, I’m desperate to try to turn English cricket around.”

Reflecting on Ali’s century, which came in just the Worcestershire all-rounder’s second Test, Cook said: “It was an incredible effort today — Mo’s [Moeen Ali] hundred, for a free-flowing batsman to be so controlled, measured and calm under that pressure.”

However, Cook conceded England had played a key part in their own downfall at Headingley.

“We lost this Test match with a really bad day yesterday [Monday].

“We had one of our worst days, with both bat and ball, and lost this game because of it.

“Obviously, as a captain, you are responsible.

“We didn’t bowl very well. We knew we had to bowl that fuller length…we knew what we were trying to do, but we just didn’t get it right.”

As for Anderson’s tears, Cook said they were evidence of England’s desperate desire to do well.

“Jimmy [Anderson], right at the end, I think that just shows to everybody who doesn’t really know us as blokes what it means to play for England.”

Catch all news and updates of the Sri Lanka tour of England 2014 here

India tour of England 2014

Aug 27, 2014 (15:00 IST)   at Cardiff

Bangladesh Tour of West Indies, 2014

Aug 27, 2014 (05:29 IST)   at Basseterre, St Kitts

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 27, 2014 (13:00 IST)   at Harare

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 29, 2014 (13:00 IST)   at Harare

India tour of England 2014

Aug 30, 2014 (15:00 IST)   at Nottingham

More

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 26, 2014  at Hambantota

Sri Lanka won by 77 runs

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 25, 2014  at Harare

Australia won by 198 runs

Bangladesh Tour of West Indies, 2014

Aug 25, 2014  at Basseterre, St Kitts

West Indies won by 91 runs

India tour of England 2014

Aug 25, 2014  at Bristol

Match abandoned without a ball being bowled

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 23, 2014  at Hambantota

Pak won by 4 wkts (D/L method)

Photos

Don Bradman's ducks

Videos

Mitchell Marsh: This is a big opportunity for me

India vs England Live Cricket Score 2nd ODI at Cardiff: England need 295 in 47 overs

Australia vs South Africa Live Cricket Score, Zimbabwe Tri Series 2014 Match 2 at Harare: Du Plessis and De Villiers turning things around

Don Bradman and his ducks

India vs England ODI series 2014: Why an Indian win will be surprising

MS Dhoni taking on England in England and BCCI at home!

Australia England England vs India England vs India 2014 India India tour of England 2014 India vs England India vs England 2014 Pakistan Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka 2014 Pakistan vs Sri Lanka Pakistan vs Sri Lanka 2014 Sri Lanka Sri Lanka vs Pakistan Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 2014 Zimbabwe Zimbabwe Triangular Series 2014

Mohit Sharma’s tight bowling for India stifles England in 2nd ODI

Australia vs South Africa, Zimbabwe Tri Series 2014 Match 2 at Harare: AB de Villiers, Faf du Plessis score centuries

Lalit Modi: I will continue to be BCCI’s bugbear

Australia vs South Africa, Zimbabwe Tri Series 2014 Match 2 at Harare: Faf Du Plessis reaches his highest ODI score

India vs England 2nd ODI delayed due to rain

Shakib Al Hasan’s return: A desperate move by Bangladesh Cricket Board?

Don Bradman and his ducks

India vs England ODI series 2014: Why an Indian win will be surprising

India vs England, 2nd ODI at Cardiff: England’s likely playing XI

MS Dhoni taking on England in England and BCCI at home!

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

664 Posts | 6 Fans

Funny cricket video

Opposition targets govt over reports about Rajnath’s son

What is a yeast infection?

Kajal Aggarwal, not Aditi Rao Hydari, finalised for playing Chandramukhi in Sudhir Mishra’s adaptation of Devdas!

India vs England 2nd ODI delayed due to rain

NGOs pursue education for all

Reliance Communications launches platform for mobile banking services

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Apple iPhone 6 photos and specifications leaked yet again ahead of September 9 launch

Arjun Rampal shoots for Roy in Langkawi!

Australia vs South Africa, Zimbabwe Tri Series 2014 Match 2 at Harare: AB de Villiers scores a half-century

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here