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Alastair Cook’s thoughts on quitting captaincy did not surprise Peter Moores

Peter Moores got a successful start to his second stint as England coach with a 3-1 series win over India © Getty Images
Peter Moores got a successful start to his second stint as England coach with a 3-1 series win over India © Getty Images

Aug 19, 2014

England coach Peter Moores stated on Monday that he understood why Alastair Cook thought of standing down as captain before leading the team to Test series glory against India.
England’s 3-1 win in a five-match series was completed in dominant style with a crushing innings and 244-run win over the visitors inside three days at The Oval on Sunday.
But prior to that campaign, England had lost 1-0 at home to Sri Lanka in a two-match campaign after a second Test defeat at Headingley in June that followed a 5-0 Ashes thrashing in Australia.
“All captains learn as you go on. But what Alastair has done really well, he’s got the No.1 quality that anyone needs to get better quickly which is humility. When he’s been successful, he still wants to get better and learn,” said Moores, in his second spell as England coach.
Despite constant backing from the coach, the Essex opener did ponder his position as skipper after the Headingley loss. Having resolved to carry on, he then faced calls from several former England captains to resign after the tea fell 1-0 behind to India after the first two Tests of their series.

Moores, whose first spell as England coach ended following criticism from then captain Kevin Pietersen, said Cook’s reaction to the Headingley defeat was entirely understandable.

“For anyone not to go away and soul-search a bit, if you’re captain or coach or player, would have been strange,” he said. “He did that. He spoke to his wife, they had conversations, he came back and significantly, at the end of that Test, he turned round to Athers [Michael Atherton] and said: ‘I’m in this for the long haul. If people don’t think I should be captain then I accept that but I want to be England captain.’

“It was quite significant for him to say that publicly,” Moores added.

England and India are set to play a one-day series starting a week Monday as part of both teams’ preparations for next year’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand where India will be the defending champions.

No England side has ever won the World Cup, with the last of their three losing appearances in the final in Australia back in 1992.
The performances of England one-day openers Cook and Ian Bell, both predominantly orthodox batsmen but not renowned big-hitters, have been contrasted unfavourably with the likes of West Indies star Chris Gayle and the Australia duo of David Warner and Aaron Finch, who generally score at a much faster rate than their English counterparts.

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