Andrew Strauss announces retirement; Alastair Cook to replace him as Test captain

Andrew Strauss played 100 Test matches, leading England in 50 of them Getty Images

Southampton: Aug 29, 2012

Andrew Strauss resigned as England’s Test captain and annnounced his retirement from professional cricket with immediate effect on Wednesday in the latest twist to the Kevin Pietersen saga that has rocked the side.

“After much thought over the last few weeks, I have decided to step down as England Test captain and announce my retirement from all forms of cricket,” Strauss said in an England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) statement issued ahead of a news conference at Lord’s.

Alastair Cook, already England’s one-day captain and Strauss’s opening partner in the five-day game, was announced as the new skipper of the Test team.

Cook’s first Test as captain will be the first of a four-match series in India in November.

After England lost their number one Test ranking to South Africa following a 51-run defeat by the Proteas at Lord’s earlier this month that took place almost a year to the day since they ascended to top spot, Strauss was uncertain regarding his future.

“It’s probably hard to answer that after the week that’s just gone by. It’s been a tiring week,” said Strauss after what was his 100th Test.

“We all need to sit down — myself and (coach) Andy Flower in particular — and try and map out the way forward,” added the left-hander, who reached his century of Test appearances on his Middlesex home ground.

Talk of a “tiring week” was a direct reference to England’s decision to drop Pietersen, who hasn’t played international cricket in any format since making 149 in the drawn second Test at Headingley after he admitted sending “provocative” texts to South African players.

Some of these were alleged to have been critical of Strauss, who succeeded South Africa-born and raised Pietersen as England captain in 2009. (AFP)

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