From a remarkable debut to a not so worthy end, Alastair Cook has seen it all in a ravishing 12-year career. As he calls it a day from International cricket, let us have a look at three of his extraordinary innings which made him gain accolades all over the world.
The debut Test century (104* vs India at Nagpur, 2006)
At the tender age of 21, Alastair Cook made a promising debut in Test cricket and was one of those debutants who registered a hundred in their opening match. His inclusion in the squad was a late call as he wasn’t the first preference for the opening slot along with Andrew Strauss. After Marcus Trescothick pulled out of the tour with a stress-related illness, the doors were open for a young man to make a mark in the international scene.
The first innings saw him scoring a brilliantly composed knock of 60 runs while the next innings saw his arrival in the Test scene with a magnificent unbeaten 104 runs. His knock was marathon one as he spent a quarter of three hours which also saw him and Kevin Pietersen stitching a 125 runs stand.
Highest Individual Test Score (294 vs India at Edgbaston, 2011)
The 2011 tour of England was a nightmare one for the visitors India, as the Alastair Cook led English side were all over them after decimating them in a humiliating manner by 4-0 in a 4 match Test series. Alastair Cook was at his impeccable best in the third Test at Edgbaston and was inflicting pain on a regular basis to the already wounded Indians.
In a first inning score of 710 for seven, Alastair Cook notched 294 and felt just 6 short of his maiden triple century. His innings was the highest in 116 years of Test cricket in Edgbaston, Birmingham, a record which is still intact and is far away from getting broken.
A befitting reply to the critics (244* vs Australia at Melbourne Cricket Ground, 2017)
England were taken down invaluably by the Aussies during the 2017 Ashes series down-under. Having lost the previous three Test matches in an embarrassing manner, the English side was heavily criticized by the cricket fraternity around the world and especially the performance of Alastair Cook which was miserable throughout the first three Tests came under scrutiny.
Alastair had to respond well and he did the same by taking all the responsibility on his shoulders as he produced a master-class knock of an unbeaten 244 which also became the highest Test score in Melbourne Cricket Club by any player around the world. His knock was a very essential one with the context of the game as well because his knock helped the English side to draw the fourth Test which was the only remarkable moment for the visitors in the unforgettable 2017 Ashes summer down-under.