“Cook’s sacking: Better late than never”

Published 12/20/2014, 3:24 AM EST


 

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Adieu Alastair Cook! In a dramatic turn of events, the English Cricket Board sacked their one day captain two months before the World Cup replacing him by teammate Eoin Morgan. All along the board had been adamant that Alastair Cook would lead the team at the World Cup. Only later did they realize that retaining him as a captain would be harder than explaining why he has been sacked.

Ex-English Bowler Steve Harmison was quoted as saying the timing of removal to be “naughty”. He feels selectors had been swayed by the media. A host of former captains – including Nasser Hussain, Alec Stewart and Michael Vaughan – have called for Cook to be replaced as captain. Cook finally paid the price for his dismal one day form which has seen him average just 30 over the last two years at a strike rate of 73 and lead England to five one day series defeats in their last six.

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Cook, nothing if not a stubborn fighter, was said to be bitterly disappointed when he was told the axe had fallen because he was certain his form would improve once he started playing in Australian conditions. Cook was under pressure when England lost to India in second Test at Lord’s last summer but managed to turn around things to win three tests on the trot and was convinced he could do the same in one-day cricket.

It’s sad to see the men who build the platform for English Cricket leaving without getting a chance to play a single World Cup. This man led England to more one day victories than any other captain – 36 from 69 matches- which included triumphs such as taking them to the top of one day rankings in 2012 and champion’s trophy final a year later. The only good thing is Irishman Morgan, such a key performer in England’s one day batting seems to be galvanized by leadership- he has scored 427 runs at an average of 72 as One day captain.

Kevin Pietersen who earlier shone in T20 Big Bash remarked that his “phone is on” for selection. As expected selectors paid no heeds to the plea of one of the greatest entertainer’s modern era has seen. England would now look to go into the World Cup under a new performing leader and who knows we might be in for few upsets.

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Akshay Kothari

19 articles

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