Alastair Cook is perhaps getting a rope way longer than he deserves © IANS
Alastair Cook is perhaps getting a rope way longer than he deserves © IANS

By CricketCountry Staff

Alastair Cook’s horror run in 2014 finally comes to an end. He walked back, dejected, to the Premadasa after a smart catch by Mahela Jayawardene off Tillakaratne Dilshan: both men were playing their last One-Day International (ODI) on home soil. Thus ended a wretched calendar year (spanning 20 ODIs) — which is the worst among England openers in a calendar year if we put a restriction of 500 runs.

Interestingly, 2013 was not a good year for Cook either. While his ODI career reached its nadir in 2014 (523 runs at 27.52 and  a strike rate of 71.3), he had not really take the world by storm the previous year (560 at 35.00, strike rate 75.2), which is, once again, fifth on the list. Do note that the two worst strike rates also belong to Cook.

Worst averages by English openers in a calendar year (qualification: 500 runs)

 Player Year M R Ave SR 100s 50s
Alastair Cook

2014

20

523

27.52

71.3

 

1

Marcus Trescothick

2005

22

553

29.10

79.6

2

1

Andrew Strauss

2006

17

517

32.31

75.5

6

Andrew Strauss

2009

21

647

32.35

78.1

1

4

Alastair Cook

2013

16

560

35.00

75.2

 

5

Let us put Cook’s 2014 on a global perspective. How poor has his performance been? There have been men who have averaged less, but not many. In fact, his name is 11th on the unwanted list, which is headed by Kusal Janith Perera (506 at 23.00, strike rate 83.6, this year).

Worst averages by openers in a calendar year (qualification: 500 runs)

 Player Year M R Ave SR 100s 50s
Kusal Janith Perera

2014

22

506

23.00

83.6

1

2

Shahid Afridi

2000

22

509

23.13

81.1

3

Upul Tharanga

2007

27

628

24.15

65.8

4

Bryan Young

1994

27

606

24.24

54.2

2

Nasir Jamshed

2013

23

568

24.69

61.6

1

2

Sanath Jayasuriya

1999

26

647

25.88

85.8

7

Romesh Kaluwitharana

1996

28

677

26.03

103.8

1

5

Virender Sehwag

2004

25

633

26.37

91.1

5

Imran Nazir

2000

27

701

26.96

71.9

1

4

Aamer Sohail

1992

22

598

27.18

64.3

1

3

Alastair Cook

2014

20

523

27.52

71.3

 

1

Though England do not have too many matches before ICC World Cup 2015, it is probably time for England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to ponder on the Cook situation seriously: better late than never.