England v Sri Lanka, 2nd Investec Test, Headingley June 24, 2014

'I never quit on anything' - Cook

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Play 01:05
Cook: I'm not a quitter

Alastair Cook has insisted he has no intention of resigning the England captaincy despite his side slipping to the first home series defeat in their history against Sri Lanka.

Under Cook's captaincy, England are now without a win in eight successive Tests - six of which they have lost - which is their worst run since 1996-97. They have also dropped two places to fifth in the Test rankings.

Cook's own batting form is also causing concern. Since the start of the 2013 Ashes series, he has played 12 Tests and batted 24 times without making a century. In that period he has averaged just 25.04.

But, asked about his position after England slipped to a 100-run defeat against Sri Lanka at Headingley, Cook was adamant that, unless the ECB decide to sack him, he will not step down.

"I've never quit on anything I've done," Cook said. "I've given it my all, all the time. Every 104 games I've played for England, I've left everything out there

"It's the same situation here. Until that moment somebody tells me they don't want me to be captain, I'll still be here. I'm incredibly proud to be England captain. I've been selected to do it.

"If someone decides I'm not the right person for the job and the results don't justify me doing it, then fine. But until that moment, I'm desperate to try to turn English cricket around."

Cook conceded, however, that his batting form was a concern and accepted that the pressure on him to justify his place in the side was mounting.

"No one's guaranteed a place in this England team," he said. "You've seen with the young players around now, they're pushing for places. That's the way it should always be.

"When you're not batting well, you start to look at a few things technically. I'm sure there's something not quite right there I can work on.

"With runs at the moment hard to come by, it does put more pressure on me. I think I've got to go back to what I've done in the past. Bowlers do get tired. I've got to be so strong mentally and let them come to my areas, I believe. But it comes down to being mentally strong at the crease. I've done it in the past. I've just got to drag that mental strength out again.

"It's an incredibly tough challenge, a tough job, there's no doubt about it, especially opening the batting."

While Cook accepted that aspects of England's play in this game - especially their batting and bowling on the fourth day - had fallen well below standard, he did find some encouragement in the performances of some of the younger players. During the match both Sam Robson and Moeen Ali hit their maiden Test hundreds.

"I don't think you can fault any of the guys with the way they've played on the final day," he said. "We lost this Test match with a really bad day yesterday. We had one of our worst days, with both bat and ball, and lost this game because of it.

"Obviously, as a captain, you are responsible. We didn't bowl very well. It wasn't for lack of trying. We knew we had to bowl that fuller length. We knew what we were trying to do, but we just didn't get it right.

"If you look at the whole series, I think we probably had the better of eight, maybe seven, of the 10 days.

"With the fifth ball of the last day of the first Test, it was taken away from us and with the fifth ball of the last over, we've lost this Test match.

"It doesn't change the fact we've lost the series. But I think it would be wrong to look at it as such a negative series, just because we lost it.

"We've seen some amazing things from some young players who've come in, and announced themselves in international cricket. It was an incredible effort on the final day, with Moeen's hundred. To play like he played, for a free-flowing batsman to be so controlled, measured and calm under that pressure can only bode well for the future.

"But we can't look past the fact that, in this game, we were 300 for 3, with a lead of 60, and we haven't been able to nail Sri Lanka down. We should have got more than 360. We needed 450, 500 on that wicket. That's what's cost us."

It was noticeable on the final day that several of England's batsmen, notably Matt Prior and Joe Root, struggled against the short ball. But while Cook admitted that a hangover from Australia, and the beating that England took at the hands of Mitchell Johnson in particular, might still be affecting some players, he took comfort in the obvious pain that defeat caused his players, suggesting it showed the passion that remained within his side. James Anderson, who battled for more than 20 overs as part of the tenth-wicket stand with Moeen, was in tears at the post-match ceremony.

"Probably what happened over the winter is still there, getting hammered in Australia," Cook said. "There is that lasting effect, even with a different side. It's still the England side.

"But you saw Jimmy, right at the end. I think that just shows to everybody who doesn't really know us as blokes what it means to us to play for England.

"You sometimes get accused of not caring that much, especially when things don't go that well. But that was the raw emotion to a guy who has put everything into 83 minutes of batting. If it was 84, we'd be sitting here with a smile on our faces."

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • ak928 on June 27, 2014, 13:53 GMT

    alastair cook is just a very very good player......his current form has been bad.......other than that dont forget what a player he jas been...........over 8000 test runs at an age of just 30....this is his bad time and i am preety sure he will bounce back to answer all the critisism that he is facing

  • on June 26, 2014, 13:48 GMT

    Cook will come good soon! All good cricketers and captains have had their patches.

  • on June 26, 2014, 13:05 GMT

    I feel Cook should be dropped as a player, because in recent times, not only has he been scoring runs, but also not been a good captain. He also has not stepped up as a captain when needed to and is yet to prove that England is worthy of holding the no.1 position in test rankings. Stuart Broad has the potential to be England's next test captain. The upcoming India series should be a deciding path for Cook.. Due to his poor captaincy ECB axed an amazing player in KP. If Cook due fail in this series, ECB should do what they did with KP...

  • flowersintherain on June 26, 2014, 12:29 GMT

    Cook may never have quit on anything, but there must come a time - like now - when his employers, the ECB, have to terminate his services without his acquiescence fro non-performance. After all, he has not made an effective contribution as captain, or with bat, for a long time.

  • dmat on June 26, 2014, 7:43 GMT

    I'm not a fan of Cook - the Captain (I regard him highly as a batsman). As a captain, I think he has lacked the imagination and has been too risk averse. Having said that, I commend him for his comments in this article. You don't give up just because you lose a few games and a couple of journalists ask some tough questions. What Cook needs to do is learn from these losses and improve his tactical game. I believe he has the support of the players which makes it a lot easier. Let's hope he shows some improvement in the series against India. He may still become one of the best England captains ever. (an Aus perspective)

  • sidh78 on June 26, 2014, 7:41 GMT

    dear alipk SL just won a series in eng against weak team. india won many series in england against strong eng team.india won many test in australia & draw many series& SL not win a single test in austrolia & lost all test series with whitewash & you say indian batsman can not play on bouncy seaming track.what a joke.in recent SA NZ test series indian batsman played very well.against SA they made above 600 runs in First test but indian bowler were useless other wise india won both test series.

  • SirViv1973 on June 26, 2014, 7:20 GMT

    @Who cares about IPL, In terms of selection for the Ind series surely the priorty at the moment has to be to get a slow bowler in to the side? Given this I think the selection of Stokes for the series would be very difficult. Assuming Anderson continues to lead the attack for the rest of the summer that would mean 1 of Broad, Jordan or Plunkett being dropped to accomodate the spinner. We are then back to an attack of 3 seam 1 spin (5th bowler Moen) and I don't see how you would then drop another of the aforementioned seam trio to bring Stokes in. Although Stokes took career best bowling figs this week IMO he is still only a 4th seamer. If he is going to come in it would be as an allrounder the role which Moen is currently playing. It's now impossible to drop Moen & given how the rest of the batting unit performed there also isn't the option to drop 1 of the top 5 & push Moen up, therefore I think Stokes will have to bide his time for now.

  • ITJOBSUCKS on June 26, 2014, 6:09 GMT

    @ mshyder look @ the facts & you will come to know...SL has mostly played in SC for the last 3-4yrs without winning any Test series....When they traveled overseas, they got hammered by 3-0 in AUS!!!

  • on June 26, 2014, 5:41 GMT

    Good on you Cook. you are a great player and the right one to lead. All have bad patches but Cook will get through and be more tactical once back in form.

  • mshyder on June 26, 2014, 5:00 GMT

    @ KrikIndFan, please be realistic, the only reason for the high Indian ranking is because of their high number of games on home ground other wise their ranking would be far below SL, somewhere around WI for that matter. Someone with even a little cricket sense can not deny that.

  • ak928 on June 27, 2014, 13:53 GMT

    alastair cook is just a very very good player......his current form has been bad.......other than that dont forget what a player he jas been...........over 8000 test runs at an age of just 30....this is his bad time and i am preety sure he will bounce back to answer all the critisism that he is facing

  • on June 26, 2014, 13:48 GMT

    Cook will come good soon! All good cricketers and captains have had their patches.

  • on June 26, 2014, 13:05 GMT

    I feel Cook should be dropped as a player, because in recent times, not only has he been scoring runs, but also not been a good captain. He also has not stepped up as a captain when needed to and is yet to prove that England is worthy of holding the no.1 position in test rankings. Stuart Broad has the potential to be England's next test captain. The upcoming India series should be a deciding path for Cook.. Due to his poor captaincy ECB axed an amazing player in KP. If Cook due fail in this series, ECB should do what they did with KP...

  • flowersintherain on June 26, 2014, 12:29 GMT

    Cook may never have quit on anything, but there must come a time - like now - when his employers, the ECB, have to terminate his services without his acquiescence fro non-performance. After all, he has not made an effective contribution as captain, or with bat, for a long time.

  • dmat on June 26, 2014, 7:43 GMT

    I'm not a fan of Cook - the Captain (I regard him highly as a batsman). As a captain, I think he has lacked the imagination and has been too risk averse. Having said that, I commend him for his comments in this article. You don't give up just because you lose a few games and a couple of journalists ask some tough questions. What Cook needs to do is learn from these losses and improve his tactical game. I believe he has the support of the players which makes it a lot easier. Let's hope he shows some improvement in the series against India. He may still become one of the best England captains ever. (an Aus perspective)

  • sidh78 on June 26, 2014, 7:41 GMT

    dear alipk SL just won a series in eng against weak team. india won many series in england against strong eng team.india won many test in australia & draw many series& SL not win a single test in austrolia & lost all test series with whitewash & you say indian batsman can not play on bouncy seaming track.what a joke.in recent SA NZ test series indian batsman played very well.against SA they made above 600 runs in First test but indian bowler were useless other wise india won both test series.

  • SirViv1973 on June 26, 2014, 7:20 GMT

    @Who cares about IPL, In terms of selection for the Ind series surely the priorty at the moment has to be to get a slow bowler in to the side? Given this I think the selection of Stokes for the series would be very difficult. Assuming Anderson continues to lead the attack for the rest of the summer that would mean 1 of Broad, Jordan or Plunkett being dropped to accomodate the spinner. We are then back to an attack of 3 seam 1 spin (5th bowler Moen) and I don't see how you would then drop another of the aforementioned seam trio to bring Stokes in. Although Stokes took career best bowling figs this week IMO he is still only a 4th seamer. If he is going to come in it would be as an allrounder the role which Moen is currently playing. It's now impossible to drop Moen & given how the rest of the batting unit performed there also isn't the option to drop 1 of the top 5 & push Moen up, therefore I think Stokes will have to bide his time for now.

  • ITJOBSUCKS on June 26, 2014, 6:09 GMT

    @ mshyder look @ the facts & you will come to know...SL has mostly played in SC for the last 3-4yrs without winning any Test series....When they traveled overseas, they got hammered by 3-0 in AUS!!!

  • on June 26, 2014, 5:41 GMT

    Good on you Cook. you are a great player and the right one to lead. All have bad patches but Cook will get through and be more tactical once back in form.

  • mshyder on June 26, 2014, 5:00 GMT

    @ KrikIndFan, please be realistic, the only reason for the high Indian ranking is because of their high number of games on home ground other wise their ranking would be far below SL, somewhere around WI for that matter. Someone with even a little cricket sense can not deny that.

  • SirViv1973 on June 25, 2014, 18:07 GMT

    @Stumpelloyd, The captaincy issue is a huge problem. If there was anyone within the current XI who could do a better job than Cook then they would probably have been installed after the winter debacle. I think Bell or maybe Prior could do the job as a stop gap if we had a younger player in the frame to take over in a year to 18 mths time but as things stand we don't. As I said in my previous post I think the selectors missed a trick by not selecting Taylor who may have been an option in a year or so. As for the selectors I totally agree with you the likes of Whittaker & Downton should not be any where near the set up, I think you can also question the involvement of Newell given his experience. Another major problem is that respected former capts like Atherton, Hussain & Vaughn who should be involved with Eng are reluctant to do so because of the stigma which comes with the role & the fact they all have much easier jobs taking about the situation on SKY etc

  • on June 25, 2014, 16:36 GMT

    As an Indian supporter I have no doubt England will reverse the trend with the upcoming India series. Indians have an average bowling attack, and England will hurt them. I wish this doesn't come true, but I fear the worst. So Mr. Cook don't you worry.

  • WhoCaresAboutIPL on June 25, 2014, 16:26 GMT

    (cont) I was actually very impressed with SL their commitment seemed to get stronger as the tour went on; Angelo M is clearly an excellent captain. That said the pitches were not very typically English. Lords was flat and dead, Headingley is not the hell hole for batting it used to be, but I still thought they would struggle to take 20 wickets. In fact they were only 2 balls from failing this test! I suspect Jimmy will be back up to speed at Trent Bridge - his favourite swinging ground…

  • WhoCaresAboutIPL on June 25, 2014, 16:23 GMT

    I am amazed at some of the suggestions here. Get real. Even if KP were to play regularly in the CC (which he does and will not) and get 6 hundreds in a row they would not pick him, his England career is over. The selectors will never change this, regardless of any other facts. The other suggestions that are also equally off the wall are selecting Buttler - who is sadly only just a regular county keeper - and bringing back Carberry. He did nothing wrong, but has been on the fringes of the side for many years without making the jump. The same applies to Compton. The selectors have said they will put their faith in youth, and that part actually worked very well, all the new young batters made runs. There has to be a way to introduce Stokes and he may replace Broad (if not fit) or one of Plunkett / Jordan. I suspect they may even go back to Monty in the short term (India matches) and they try out others on mini-tours such as Lions.

  • dharshanf on June 25, 2014, 16:21 GMT

    Cook is the best you've got. Bring in another cappy and you guys will get hammered by the baggies! strengthen Captain Cook. Give him the boost he needs. Let him the ECB IS BEHIND HIM. He will come good! I am a Sri Lankan and I see much potential in the England side.

  • KrikIndFan on June 25, 2014, 16:21 GMT

    Inspite of all the big talks, ICC rankings at the moment, SL ranks 6th in test, India 4th, inspite of their imaginary good bowling, SL ranks 3rd in ODI, India 2nd, inspite of their daydreaming, SL ranks 2nd in T20, India 1st, add to that more losses to Ind in all formats, Ind % won v/s SL, test 40%, ODI 59%, T20 60%...yawn! and this is just the tip of the iceberg.

  • stumpedlloyd on June 25, 2014, 15:49 GMT

    @SirViv1973: I see your point. I agree that Eoin Morgan didn't exactly light up the test arena. I was looking for someone to shake things up - though that isn't exactly the ECB's modus operandi. But watching Cook skipper the 4th day at Headingley was painful. He showed absolutely no imagination, seemed utterly bereft of ideas. When Mathews was whacking the ball to all parts of the ground, Cook still stuck to the same plan, exemplifying the definition of insanity of doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Perhaps it's the selectors who ought to go. Downton and Whitaker? How about bringing in people who've actually contributed much to English cricket - Gower, Botham, Vaughan, Atherton, Willis et al? I cannot see anyone in the current line up who could skipper the side. Certainly not Broad. On the other hand, Cook should probably consider himself lucky that they play India next. Imagine if he had to face Steyn, Morkel and Philander right now.

  • mshyder on June 25, 2014, 15:18 GMT

    The pedestrian bowling attack of India will not only bring Cook back to form but will provide England the moral boosting win so that Cook can continue being the captain. Don't worry Cook its daylight just round the corner.

  • Maz_The_Indian on June 25, 2014, 15:05 GMT

    Cook should look at the positives and move on. I am sure if it would have been a 5 match series, they would have bounced back and as rightly pointed out by Cook, out of the 10 days, they were up for 7 days, first match was drawn after being so close and second they lost at second last delivery of the day. If they can do well for 70% of the test series, its not at all bad job. They just dint have the killing instinct on required occasions. Its going to be interesting against the fairly new Indian guns

  • on June 25, 2014, 14:59 GMT

    He will get in form against Indiq. India have a good bowling line up who can make any player to get his form back.

  • on June 25, 2014, 14:44 GMT

    He will definitely resign from test captaincy after this Indian tour..

  • On-Drive on June 25, 2014, 14:44 GMT

    Mr. Cook and ECB, don't worry. Indian bowlers are set to give Cook a batting practice for 10 tests. They are famous for bringing an out of form batsman to an in form batsman.

  • on June 25, 2014, 14:33 GMT

    It's 2 weeks to the first test again India, so I don't think there's time to really change captains and have everybody settled under the new regime.

  • alipk52 on June 25, 2014, 14:30 GMT

    Sri Lanka is great team, everyone plays with passion in this team, simple is that, I must say, England will definitely find the form against mediocre Indian side, SL is 4 times better than india in all form of game, I am not saying this considering Indians poor performances outside home, but I am saying that coz it doesn't matter how great Indian batsmen would be at home, they are clueless in Bouncy tracks, if England prepare batting friendly pitches, it'll be more curtails for India, England will crush them I tell you, Indian batsmen will be unable to play against Broad, Anderson and Plunket trio , England still needs to bring back Ben Stokes, he's brilliant, send Ballance to open and take out Robson from the team, after root, there'll be Stokes, prior, Broad plus extra bowler in stokes.

  • on June 25, 2014, 14:21 GMT

    Cook is out of batting form, but he is a great and classy captain. One should not blame just the captain when things dont work out for the whole team.

  • on June 25, 2014, 14:18 GMT

    It would be absurd from the ECB, if they sacked Cook for the poor phase that England are going through. Sure there were instances that he went utterly defensive against the opponents. But that should not be a reason for the management to fire him. The same thing has happend with Msd and he still temains the captain. So that should also be the case with Cook. Who knows that the Indian series will be a turning point for the team as far as fortune is concerned.

  • on June 25, 2014, 14:03 GMT

    At present,England has no better option than Cook as a Test captain.So,he deserves a chance till the India series.If he fails that time,ECB will have to go through some review process.

  • on June 25, 2014, 13:53 GMT

    Cook appeared to run out of ideas, he failed to do the basics when Matthews was batting like stopping him from taking a single on the 4th/5th ball of each over, over after over. Defensive field settings & not bringing on ANY spin was a BIG mistake. Also he caved into Anderson when it came to setting his field (just like in Australia).

    Cook is not what I would call "Street smart" when it comes to captaincy, he is one dimensional. What I mean by this is that when Plan A isn't working he lacks a Plan B & C, etc.. Being a great player (which Cook is) doesn't mean you'll be a good captain. Sir Ian Botham, Andrew Flintoff both great players but not good captains. Mike Brearley not a particularly good player but a fantastic captain.

  • on June 25, 2014, 13:34 GMT

    At the end all it counts is, bagging a win. Out of ten fabulous cricketing days in between kicky season(FIFA), English team dominated 8 days but at the end SL has its first series win in England.

  • dharshanf on June 25, 2014, 13:27 GMT

    Emotions are high! England lost a game they thought they thought they had in the bag. I am a Sri Lankan and yet I remember the times that Sanga, Mahela were in teams that failed and failed. Though the press was critical they were given time to let their bats do the talking. looking at the England side, Bell, Robson, Ali,Balanace all played well. The fast bowlers Anderson, Jordon and Borad were a menace. Giev them time and space. Give them encouragement they will come back to playing great cricket! As a Sri Lankan I am proud of the way SL played and out played. But England was a fore to reckon with!!

  • KrikIndFan on June 25, 2014, 13:22 GMT

    Eng. loss is more cause of their performance in their batting than SL's bowling. If they can't perform against a mediocre team like SL, can't imagine how on earth will they play v/s the mighty Indians.

  • crx on June 25, 2014, 13:17 GMT

    @ThePacifist10

    I think you misunderstood me for an English, I am an Indian and that is the reason I know exactly how even an average player starts scoring against India...by saying this I don't say Cook is an average player..he is better than that...I have very serious doubt on Indian teams's bowling abilities...can't say more than this right now..lets wait for the series to begin...

  • 2nd_Slip on June 25, 2014, 13:05 GMT

    Opening the batting, facing the press, encouraging your troops and winning their respect, leading from the front scoring runs when your team needs them the most and being one of the best batsmen of your generation is not something for every other person. Graeme Smith is an absolute legend, best captain of the modern era!! Eng should use him as Cooks consultant or something.

  • on June 25, 2014, 12:58 GMT

    At the end all it counts is, bagging a win. Out of ten fabulous cricketing days in between kicky season(FIFA), English team dominated 8 days but at the end SL has its first series win in England.

  • senthilshanmu on June 25, 2014, 12:56 GMT

    Cook should not quit his captain post untill India series finishes

  • ThePacifist10 on June 25, 2014, 12:52 GMT

    @crx

    Last time we lost to England, they were at full power and we were in transition. What happened after we rebuilt? The Aussies were smashed, we won in England, the Caribbean, Zimbabwe and India before giving a really good fight in places like SA and NZ. We had hope overseas, consistent one at that. We created opportunities and fought, despite losing/drawing in SA and NZ. Victories come with experience, and believe me when I say this young team is quickly becoming a formidable force to reckon with. The WT20 was yet another example of this team's strength. We're slowly becoming a well-balanced team capable of defending our title next year. Just remember, we hold two trophies and nearly won a third.

  • on June 25, 2014, 12:47 GMT

    last time Cook turned around his career against Aussies...does that make their attack bad? I love the low expectation from Indian team. Dhoni thrives in such situations.

  • whoster on June 25, 2014, 12:39 GMT

    Cook can only become a good captain when he starts scoring runs again. I'd say his lack of runs is affecting his captaincy rather than the other way round. A captain who isn't performing as a player is more likely to be conservative, although that doesn't excuse the predictable way in which Cook handled his bowlers. He has to put faith in ALL his bowlers - not just the core duo of Anderson and Broad. Jordan, Plunkett and Moeen have all shown enough promise with the ball, and with Robson and Ballance also showing good signs, that's encouraging for England's future.

    The selectors need to get tough also. Broad clearly isn't 100%, and his place at present shouldn't be guaranteed.

  • Mindmaker on June 25, 2014, 12:36 GMT

    Its good you have never quit on anything Cooky but there is always a first time for everything!!

  • crx on June 25, 2014, 12:26 GMT

    If not for the upcoming India series, cook would have resigned. Any player badly in search of form, needs to play just one game against India and out of form becomes history. He is going to score minimum 500 runs in this series and people would start counting him as a great batsman/leader blah blah...

  • on June 25, 2014, 12:17 GMT

    Wouldn't it be better if he played for Essex rather than having a week of nets? Recovery of form is usually a matter of match practice rather than net practice. The biggest downside of central contracts is the decoupling of Test players from the first-class game.

    Cook has two problems - lack of results as captain with poor performance with the bat. Although the two are related they need to be dealt with separately. Playing in the CC would give him the opportunity to concentrate on his batting without the cares of captaincy but I suspect what we are seeing with Cook is a phenomenon well-known in other sports such as athletics and tennis - burn-out.

    He got to the top-level at a very early age and has had an incredible run of form as well as the added responsibility of captaincy in two formats of the game - at first all was well but as time has gone on the pressure has noticeably affected his performance both as player and captain. 1/2

  • on June 25, 2014, 12:13 GMT

    It's time ECB reinstate KP in the team or India will annihilate England.. KP is their best batsmen and he should be in the team.. My guts says that KP will be included in the ODI squad after the humiliating defeat they will face against India in the test series.. SL need to win in India before boasting.. Being a sub-continental team It's really embarrasing to not win a single test match in India.. India wins in SL all the time..

  • Absolutelycricket on June 25, 2014, 12:11 GMT

    Cook is great batsman, he is not in form which is costing england now not his captaincy, looking at second match england need openers to step up and make some runs . would be a good idea to let moeen open and cook 1 down. series against india would be testing for england as few batsman in form. indian side is completely diff to last one with more pace. good luck cook

  • on June 25, 2014, 12:09 GMT

    These youngsters of India has every chance to succeed, There are no. of reasons why they would succeed.. 1) They are now familiar with these kind of conditions as they played well in SA & NZ it doesn't matter they didn't win bt they gained invalueble experience to play in these conditions, That test match b/w SA and Ind at Johannesburg is one of the best test match in d entire history of test cricket, There were no legends in our team then, These boys made a match out of it..2)India is in better mental and physical state than England..3)England's captain looks out of sorts in both batting and captaincy, Cook is a good man but he's horribly out of form and out of ideas. It is demoralising for a team to have a captain like him..4)They have tasted success in England last year by winning the CT 2013 beating England in the final so it will give them confidence. These young guns are fearless and relentless.. England mustn't take them lightly at all.. It's gonna be a historic test series..

  • SAF-Fan-no-1 on June 25, 2014, 12:03 GMT

    Never quit - sack him and sack prior.....! Give captancy to young lad Joe Root or Moin Ali. New Establish team otherwise India's Batting & now India's bowling Sami & Co...Please Get new lad Zafar Ansari as a Oppener..........!

  • rizwan1981 on June 25, 2014, 11:58 GMT

    The England top 6 are competent but none of them have the ability to score quickly either to give the bowlers adequate time to dismiss the opposition TWICE ( i.e take 20 wickets ) or destroy bowler(s) and make life easier for the rest of the batsmen- Only KP has done so CONSISTENTLY in the recent past.

    The Enfant Terrible of English cricket has dominated Murali ,Harbajan , Warne and Steyn among others and scores at a fair clip - KP is a match winner. There is a place for a plodder like the obdurate and doughty Cook in test cricket but if there are too many Cooks in the team , its very difficult to win matches.

    I also think it was harsh to drop Michael CARBERRY - He is asked to front up against Mitch Johnson in overseas conditions but is omitted when England is playing at home against a military medium sub-continental attack like Sri Lanka and India

  • on June 25, 2014, 11:36 GMT

    "I never quit on anything" probably means that he is kind of person who needs to be kicked out.. ECB take the bold step. You should have kicked out Cook before Peiterson.

  • SirViv1973 on June 25, 2014, 11:24 GMT

    @Jono Makin, I would agree that Root still needs to devolpe his all round game but I think the double century at Lords will have bought him plenty of time to do it. Going in to the series I think his place was under serious threat & he probably only got in coz he had been in the side for a while and it would have meant Eng goin in with 4 rookie batsman. Sadly I do think Taylor is some distance away. He had a very good tour to SRL a few months ago with Lions & I felt that would have earned him a place in the side for this series. However even before the squad was announced his name wasn't even being mentioned which I found very suprising. Having all got 100's you would expect Eng will now stick with Robson, Ballance & Ali. Vince has scored sacks of runs in FC cricket and is probably next in line. You would also expect Stokes to come back sooner rather than later & that will have to be at the expense of a batsman given that we also need to get a slow bowler in to the side.

  • landl47 on June 25, 2014, 11:23 GMT

    While I applaud Cook for being resolute, the fact is that he is making the same mistakes now as captain that he did in Australia or even in England last year. He appears not to have analyzed his own performance nor to have observed that of other captains. For example, he started this test by bowling Jimmy Anderson for a ten-over spell. This cost Anderson later in the game- just as his long spell in the 1st test of 2013 cost him. Cook used Jordan as a stock bowler, bowling 8 over spells at 85mph instead of shorter, sharper bursts. Moeen wasn't used much until a long time into Sri Lanka's second innings- when he was, he dismissed Sanga and Thirimanne quickly. Cook stayed with the same tactics long after they weren't working against Herath and Mathews; compare this with Mathews, who made 11 bowling changes in the last hour to try and unsettle Anderson and eventually it worked.

    England needs inspired leadership to improve. They won't get it from Cook.

  • ninjapintu on June 25, 2014, 11:16 GMT

    Well, good luck Cook. I do think you need better support from your bowlers if you are to do well against India

  • on June 25, 2014, 11:10 GMT

    keep going England - you showed some guts against a team with more.

  • on June 25, 2014, 11:03 GMT

    Alister has a great opportunity to came into form with the Indian series just weeks away. The insipid Indian attack is the best chance for Alister to run into form. As regards captaincy he can certainly continue till the next guy is spotted quickly. But can he find palace aim the team as a pure batsman. That is doubtful given his run of low scores last 6-8 tests. Best is for him him to drop itself and vie for a place along with others based on form. Will Aister do that?

  • Mike_Tyson on June 25, 2014, 10:56 GMT

    @ Nadal Hornets - As great as it is to break the world record, Lara's 2 scores were on the flattest wickets i have seen against a pretty average England attack both times. Even Tendulkar's highest was only against B'desh but no point undermining one great's achievement over another's especially when they were both against average attacks on flat wickets.

    As for Sachin scoring his rune on SC wickets, I may be wrong but his overall record away from home is just as good as his record at home and he has a very impressive record in countries like Eng, Aus, SA etc. Do some research before posting.

  • on June 25, 2014, 10:41 GMT

    Cook is being criticised and most of the people want him to step down. This is the exact time he should not be asked to step down. If Cook now need to be Captain he will have to up him game. The large support staff England have should work together to iron out issues in the team and make it better. Cook should be guided as well. He should not be in front of the press answering questions. He should practice hard. If another captain is appointed it will not change much. It might have slight changes but not the kind that will benefit the team in the long run. If you remember SL in 2012 and 2013, they had a lot of areas of improvement. They have worked on it and have become a better team. There are still areas of improvement. If England stick with Cook and they turn it around they will be able to perform like SL in 2014.

  • SirViv1973 on June 25, 2014, 10:25 GMT

    Cont. He was the only player to come out of the winter with any credit. As for Jimmy, we know he isn't effective every match and never has been. For me he is still the first bowler on the team sheet when playing in Eng. However I can see a scenario over the winter where perhaps he is no longer an automatic choice for overseas test matches. Plunkett & Jordan have shown enough to suggest that they are likely to be around for a while & with hopefully Finn & Stokes to come back in to the reckoning plus the need for a slow bowler in slower conditions JA might not be the best suited to lead the attack.

  • dunger.bob on June 25, 2014, 10:22 GMT

    YorkshirePudding: I think I'd persist with Cook until a better alternative comes along or someone in there already puts their hand up. Forget Bell, he doesn't want the job. .. Hey, maybe one of the newbies is a born captain. I wouldn't put it past Ali actually.

    Anyway, I really think you guys should give Cooky a decent chance to see what he can do with them. Two Tests isn't a long enough period to judge fairly. .. mate, your team is in a state of shock. I just think that changing captains now is only going to add to the trauma and set you back even further unless you're extremely lucky. .. your success over the last few years was largely built on stability and so it is for all the good to great teams. Chopping and changing in a reactionary way isn't likely to succeed. Just set a course and stick to it. At least Cook looks to be good at that.

  • crktttt on June 25, 2014, 10:20 GMT

    Don't worry Cook, good days are around the corner for you and England. India is touring England.

    How I wish it was South Africa or even New Zealand that was touring England right now.. Their bowling would have tested Cook..

  • on June 25, 2014, 10:20 GMT

    Cook needs to admit to himself that he's not cutting it as a Captain. You can get away with some mistakes because that happens sometimes, but once it starts to affect your specialist role in the team and it clearly has with Cook, something needs to change before the India series begins in less than a fortnight. At first i thought that Shane Warne was on a personal witch-hunt with Cook, but his reluctance to give any spinner (except Swann) a lenghty spell and the painful display in the field on day four at Headingley, just illustrates one of his many flaws. But if he was to quit as Captain what are the options, Broad...Morgan...Root?...i think Cook needs the freedom to focus on his batting. It worked for a certain Mr Botham in 1981, maybe it will for Cook too.

  • py0alb on June 25, 2014, 10:11 GMT

    Cook and Prior must go. Pietersen to be reinstated as captain.

  • Captain_Tuk_Tuk on June 25, 2014, 10:10 GMT

    If Misbah didn't quit after losing to Zimbabwe why should Cook quit after loosing a close Test against one of the Test sides anyone care to explain?

  • on June 25, 2014, 10:06 GMT

    @Harlequin, I can't really see Root as being the answer. He goes deep into his hole under pressure. I'm not even sure he is one of England's best six batsmen.

    @Yorkshire Pudding, are you sure that Bell is that reluctant? For mine he is probably just falling in behind Cook when he says publicly that Cook is the best man for the job, he may not actually believe that. I'm not Bells biggest fan but he is still making runs and is the senior man in the middle order, of all the senior players, he is doing the best and seems less jaded than others.

    @SirViv1973, are you sure he is that far off? I'm not. I think Root must still prove that he has an allround game. England will persist with him a little while longer yet, of course. But who would have thought last October that Robson, Stokes, Ballance and Moeen would all have test centuries under their belts seven matches later? That KP, Trott and Swann had less than a combined 10 matches left in them? No-one.

  • Harlequin. on June 25, 2014, 9:49 GMT

    @YorkshirePudding - personally, I would bite the bullet and give it to Root. Sure he has only played a handful of tests but so had Graeme Smith when he was given the helm. Root has a lot of fight in him, and seems to like to face challenges head on. The only thing I would be worried about is whether he will be able to keep is place as a batsman - he would need to be a bit more consistent in order to do that.

    I'd also like to see them get rid of the senior players as well. Buttler in for Prior, Compton back for Cook, Stokes in for Anderson. Broad and Bell have probably done enough in the past 12 months to deserve a bit more leeway. This would make the India series very interesting and would be a true 'new era'.

    I don't think any of this will happen though, we will stick with the same team and the most we can hope for is to scrape a couple of test wins over the next 12 months.

  • EdGreen on June 25, 2014, 9:41 GMT

    'I never quit on anything' - Cook - 'when it comes to captaincy if the best you can do is rubbish then doing quitting is acceptable' - Green

  • ToadyB on June 25, 2014, 9:39 GMT

    Cook is not a particularly inspirational captain and some of his decisions are questionable, but who would England select to replace him? Ian Bell, a man whose resolve and confidence have alway been questionable, is the current vice-captain of this side. The next most senior player is probably Broad, who lacks the temperament for the job. To be fair to Cook, he also has very little to work with in terms of players. Nobody in that side really stands out as special in any way - there are just no game changers in the mix - and this is a fairly inexperienced side with a few senior players, like Prior and Andersen, who are quite frankly past it.

  • BradmanBestEver on June 25, 2014, 9:34 GMT

    Dark days for English cricket - not selecting a spinner was a sign of panic among the selection panel

    The policy of 4 quick-men only works when the quality of the bowlers is high - e.g. the Windies of the 80s. England's pace attack is serviceable at best so the 4 quicks policy will never work for them. They must say "come in spinner" to have any chance of climbing of the bottom of the test cricket heap.

  • Puffin on June 25, 2014, 9:31 GMT

    Not sure I agree this "rebuilding" is a valid excuse for recent failures. It seems to me the newer players have stood out with good performances, whilst the experienced ones have sat back and failed over and over. As for the quality of the captaincy, I don't like the feeling of complacency that comes across. It ought to be harder to be england captain than it appears.

  • YorkshirePudding on June 25, 2014, 9:14 GMT

    @dunger.bob, I would ask who takes over from cook? the remaining senior players are In the same boat in regards to the new faces. Does a new captain come from inside or out and does anyone want it, based on the pressure the media applies. Prior wouldn't take it, I doubt bell would.

    So you draft in a new captain who justifies has e experience in the county game and the runs? and who do you drop to accommodate that unknown player?

  • SirViv1973 on June 25, 2014, 9:05 GMT

    I think most would agree that Cook's days as capt are numbered and if he holds on to the job for the series with Ind it will only be because there are no other viable candidates. I wonder if the selectors missed a trick but not picking James Taylor for this series. JT's batting alone over the past few years at both county level & for the lions has warranted a run in the test side. However he could also potentially have been seen as a future capt having done the job for the Lions to good effect on numerous occasions. If he would have come in to the side this summer and done well with the bat Eng could have given the reluctant Bell the captaincy short term until the next summer's ashes and potentially had JT take over after that by which time he would have had the experience of 20 plus tests. However with all 4 of the younger batsman scoring 100's, Vince doing so well with Hants & Stokes to come back in at some point JT place in the top 6 looks further away than ever.

  • Subu on June 25, 2014, 9:00 GMT

    Both the teams had their own shortcomings and there is very little to differentiate in terms of skill but the big difference is the "Self belief" of this Srilankan team. They seized the critical moments in both the tests and were determined to fight. However ugly his technique and batting might look, Angelo Mathews single handedly won this match for SL and gained some respect for his position and captaincy. His batting with the tail enders and the eventual target made SL believe that they can win. Both teams allowing the tails to Wag for a Loooonger time shows the bowling quality.

    For all the Indian fans, the bowling quality of 2014 team is much worse than the 2011 team. We had seen these group of bowlers in SA and NZ and nothing has changed significantly in skills or temperament. Other than a self destruct from England, it will be a fairly neutral series which might end mostly in draw or a shared series.

  • RichDeGroen on June 25, 2014, 8:59 GMT

    Just seems to be a lack of genuine quality about this England side now. If you look at the top 2 sides right now, Aus & SA, they have real quality in their attacks. Anderson is in decline after a few golden years, Broad goes MIA for long periods and the rest are middling and inexperienced. As well as this there is a serious stink about their management, not least an under-performing and dull captain who has been given license to build a team in his image rather than a team of quality (sacking their best batsman for being difficult in the process). Sport is meant to be difficult and this England is in retreat. Its meek, mild and I can't see it getting out of the middle of the test rankings for a long time. I used to despise Dhoni's passive captaincy in tests, but I think he is now the more daring skipper. I hope they knock England off in the upcoming series.

  • dunger.bob on June 25, 2014, 8:47 GMT

    I feel a bit sorry for Cook the man, not Cook the captain though. I tried to think what the last year or so has been like through his eyes. First, he went to India, played brilliantly and along with some excellent assistance from a few of his senior players, pulls off the almost impossible. A series win in India. .. Then the Aussies at home - slightly tougher than expected but nevertheless a fairly comprehensive 3-0 win. .. Then the trip down under. .. Shattered. Bombed out of existence almost was the team that swaggered in, cook book in hand, ready for a 3 month picnic.

    It must have looked like a car accident to him it happened so fast. .. Suddenly he's playing Sri Lankan with nothing like the team or management he thought he would be a year ago. .. One of my long winded points is he barely knows half the players in his team. How's he expected to captain them?.

    Having said all that though, he is an ordinary captain at this point in is career though. England could do better surely.

  • SirViv1973 on June 25, 2014, 8:46 GMT

    @StumpedLloyd, We cannot go down the road of bringing in a player to captain the team who dosen't warrant selection in the first XI. Morgan was given an extended opportunity to build a test career but came up short. An ave of 30 from 24 inns with only 2 100s isn't good enough at this level. He had another opportunity to impress the selectors early in the season having chosen not to go to the IPL but wasn't able to do so. Besides Morgan has not been overly impressive when he has taken charge over the limited overs team.

  • Front-Foot-Lunge-Needs-A-Hug on June 25, 2014, 8:41 GMT

    @gbqdgj, I would drop Broad because he is ineffective, Anderson because he has been out of form for a year, Prior becasue he has been out of form for a year and a half and can get bounced out by medium pace short balls as well as not being anywhere near the best keeper in England. Root because despite his ability to make one ton a year is kept in the side on potential which is not a reason to keep in form players out of the side. I would drop Cook too. If Anderson is capable of match winning performances where are they? This clinging to past performances shows weakness, not loyalty. They should be loyal to the fans and pick the best available side but I think Flower has too much say and seems a control freak which Moores has a reputation for too, according to former players.

  • SL_Fan1986 on June 25, 2014, 8:31 GMT

    Winning of a test match in England for India is very very far away just try your level best to get a draw with the support of the rain my dear.

  • on June 25, 2014, 8:23 GMT

    Stuart Board should be made captain. Cook should be axed. Jos Butler should be included. Ian Bell should go back to opening.

  • on June 25, 2014, 8:22 GMT

    England must not take this new Indian team lightly.. You haven't faced these bowlers in these conditions yet.. CT 2013 showed us what this bowling attack can do in these conditions, Remember the final vs England? England must better prepare well rather than talking big in press conferences.. Remember It's not 2011, It's 2014 and lots have changed in three years.. Srilanka still has to win in India, a sub-continent country.. We beat SL in SL most of the time, wonder why can't they replicate the same against India in India? We will win this series even without our proven legends.. Our young guns will make us proud..I believe in India.. The best fighting team in the world.. It seems like whole world is against India but if India triumph it will be like a superhero thrashing villains.. Ind 4-0 Eng.. The perfect revenge..

  • gbqdgj on June 25, 2014, 8:22 GMT

    @Jamie Monaghan - Not entirely sure I agree with you about other sides working Cook out - he's an opening batsman after all. He has always faced pitched up balls and whilst they may now bowl fewer short balls, the difference is that he used to leave the pitched up ones and now he plays at them. Whether it's the captaincy or something else, it's definitely mental not a technique issue since the flaws you see now have always been there. I think he needs to sort his mind out. If I were the selectors I would replace him as Captain...not sure who with mind you (Broad is immature, Prior needs to focus on keeping and batting, Bell doesn't have the aggression required...I actually wonder about doing a South Africa and give it to a youngster as they did with Smith). At least then the spotlight would be off him and hopefully the runs will flow.

  • on June 25, 2014, 8:04 GMT

    Cook lacks aggression. If he says he don't quit on anything,, then why he supported KP's exclusion?? He should have allowed to play for some more time,,,

  • steve48 on June 25, 2014, 8:03 GMT

    @jamie moneghan, good comments on Cook the batsman. The only time batsman seem to be acknowledged as having a fatal flaw is against the short ball or spin, everything else seems to be put down to a repairable technical glitch! Cook has always struggled in the area you mentioned, bowlers are now ruthlessly exploiting it, perhaps alongside his efforts to succeed as a 50 over batsman accentuating the problem.

  • on June 25, 2014, 8:03 GMT

    India still need good fast bowler, in England. Buvi only shoot in sub continent, but he can manage. Shami is backbone of Indian bowlers, we missing 3 bowler. Ishant Sharma lost his confidence, Aron bowling lose consistency.On current batsman except Dhoni no one has good avg in England. But we can expect kohli, pujara can score.Gambhir in 6 innings score 102 at avg 17.00 in England. But on current England form India can win 1 or 2 match. If Indian players play with confident, they will make 5 - 0 Possible.

  • Baundele on June 25, 2014, 8:01 GMT

    When the best batsman of the team is dumped for no publicly citable reason, it hurts the team morale. Cook is an excellent batsman; but at the moment he has very little to do as the captain.

  • gbqdgj on June 25, 2014, 7:38 GMT

    @front-foot etc etc - why would you drop Broad, Anderson, Root or Prior? Prior averaged 46 in the series and whilst Anderson and Broad had a poor test match they are both capable of producing match turning spells (as Anderson showed at Lords). Root doesn't make enough hundreds yet but scored a double at Lords. I agree with your comments about Cook's captaincy, he's great when it's all going well but clueless when thinks don't happen for him.

    To my earlier question, I think I've just had an epiphany, would you recommend replacing the quartet above if Australia weren't over in England next year? Thought not!!!!

  • on June 25, 2014, 7:31 GMT

    I can't understand how give 5 test matches to india. See the stats of last india tour. And compare the oversees records sri lanka and india.

  • DaisonGarvasis on June 25, 2014, 7:27 GMT

    For one Cook knows if he resign from Captaincy, he won't be in the team for his current batting form. His career may well be over. So he is not going to make that decision but will take the "positive" comment saying "I never quit". It is for ECB to make the call of "dropping" him. I won't bet on ECB making that call because that will undermine their original decision to go with Cook by firing KP. ECB has a golden opportunity to right the wrong by getting KP back as Captain for India Series. A fired up KP would be enough to get a 5-0 against India. Would ECB do that? Naaahhh

  • on June 25, 2014, 7:25 GMT

    The difference between England and Indian openers for this upcoming series will be Dhawan as if he finds some form he can be as destructive as Sehwag! And let's face it England have to produce flat batting wickets now they can't produce dust bowls for Swann, so will suit the Indian batsmen. It's India's bowling that is the worry as you only have to look at Ashwins record outside of England , and he is unlikely to bowl on any spin friendly pitches in England now.

  • on June 25, 2014, 7:12 GMT

    Duncan fletcher in 2011 inherited an old Indian side which was well past their best...The situation is different now...The current crop of Indian players are here to stay and win test matches..

  • on June 25, 2014, 6:52 GMT

    Can people stop saying it's the "Captaincy" that has ruined Cooks batting. The reality is that teams have now figured out Cooks weakness and Technical flaw by pitching it up outside off, Australia and NZ started this and it's making Cook look pretty mediocre. So Cook has to change his batting style , not the Captaincy ( although his captaincy is woeful at best) .

  • WeeBee on June 25, 2014, 6:39 GMT

    Cook should really stop playin and start cooking.

  • zacky2 on June 25, 2014, 6:37 GMT

    I would put the entire blame on Cook, even in the 1st test, he could have declared when they reached 350 and put in SL and bowled a few overs and that is the time they lose wickets after having leather hunted the whole day. That is what happened to England in in the 2nd test. When SL batted just before lunch he could have given an over each to Plunkett and Jordan. And then before taking the new ball he could have given a an over or two to Moieen Ali and Root. He is waiting for things to happen using the same bowlers instead of trying different things, when the batsmen get used to the same bowlers they grow in confidence and then it's too late. Zacky

  • BHAGWAN-XI on June 25, 2014, 6:35 GMT

    just one year before may 2013, every thing good better and well for england team and his captain and team performance. They have good batting line up like trott, kp, bell, cook himself and bowling swan, and board and anderson in very well form. So what happen in just last six months. Every team lost some series but they have lost his team too. No kp, no trott, no swan and no team performance. What happened. When england comes to india and they won 2-1 the series, Every one fan of cook batting and his captaincy. But after ashes series in australia they lost the series, cook should rebuild the team. He should back for trott, kp and swan to play with him but he is not able to manage the team. Every one given you support when you win, but you have to ability to be believe your team mate when you lost. And now cook himself need the support from his team and should they need trott and kp to back in his team.

  • Kingman75 on June 25, 2014, 6:25 GMT

    Cook is the worst English test captain now. Ever

  • ITJOBSUCKS on June 25, 2014, 5:59 GMT

    @ Ruwan_Asanka why did you not consider India's performance pre 2011(from 2000 -2011)?? Is it bc'oz Ind did far better than any SC teams like SL, Pak...Ind drew the series in ENG in 02 & won the series in 07, Ind won the series in NZ in 2009, won couple of times in WI, drew the series in SA in 2011, drew the series in AUS in 2004 & could've been 2-1 in favour of IND in 2008 had steve bucknor not made so many blunders...Now tell which other SC team has performed so WELL outside SC from 2000-2011 ??? Ind did lose post 2011 due to the struggling aging batsmen...now that is not case..watch out for IND this summer in ENG!!!

  • Kruns on June 25, 2014, 5:45 GMT

    @Ajanthan Shantiratnam Do not compare this SL wins against the coming Indian Side they are two different series and two diffrent teams...

    Also wait and watch the indians play in England with the likes for VK (One of the best currently in all formats) Pujara , Rohit , Rahane ETC i am sure this time they would definitely do well..

    SL bowling was also not up to the mark but there hard work paid off and India just need to look into this aspect and try to take 20 wkts of the opposition and they have enough batting strenght to prove there worth outside India.

    MEN IN BLUE incase you are reading any of this comments show the world what you are made off by performing at your best in england (winning or losing is secondary your efforts would be seen)

  • social_monster09 on June 25, 2014, 5:37 GMT

    @Arun Bose:- I saw in couple of days that you always predicting 4-0 or 5-0 win for India in your comments. Do you really think that it's so easy for any team to beat the opponent in there own country like this? You think that English side is so weak that they will loose 4-0 or 5-0 like they serve it to Indian team like a dish in the plate to eat. What will happen if India again loose this series no matter by what margin then what will you do? Love for country is good but Overconfidence is always the cause of failure. Just wanna see your comments when the series should over.

  • SL_Fan1986 on June 25, 2014, 5:26 GMT

    sarangsrk : I think you missed something.This is just a recap of Indan overseas test perfomance since 2011. Eng Vs Ind = 4 - 0 Aus Vs Ind = 4 - 0 Nz Vs Ind = 1 - 0 Sa Vs Ind = 1 - 0 I am Wondering how india is better than Sri Lanka.This is wtat you call Jealousy attitude over other Countries.

  • Front-Foot-Lunge-Needs-A-Hug on June 25, 2014, 4:54 GMT

    Moores failed before and got the job again? Wow, talk about cupboards being bare @FFL. Cook might not want to quit but nobody has said anything good about his captaincy, nobody, not even his old mates in the commentary box so he can stop the focus on Warne and pick up a copy of captaincy for dummies. His batting? He's so out of form that England start at 1/ every time. There's no ruthlessness about England and carrying out of form players will equal continued poor results. Cook, Root, Prior Anderson and Broad must be replaced. If you look at Warne's comments in October before the Ashes he was absolutely spot on with everything he said about England and the same things ring true now.

  • valvolux on June 25, 2014, 4:37 GMT

    You just get the feeling England have forgotten how to win, much like the Aussies had for a long time. Those great escapes England were famous for are now turning into heart breaking losses/draws and make no mistake, they will take nothing out of this series. Cook is a bit like Ponting in terms of his captaincy - he leads by example with the bat, but in the field he relies on individual magic rather than imaginative captaincy. Ponting held on to his captaincy until his batting started to fail and Clarke got over his personal issues. For now I can't see anyone to replace Cook. You need a guy who is guaranteed to play and the only other guys are Broad/Anderson/Bell. I've never liked bowlers as captains and i'm not convinced Bell is the right man as they still don't know where to bat him. Sri Lanka have some legends, but they aren't a top 3 test team so to lose to them at home is disastrous for England. Losing KP, Trott and Swann overnight is going to take several years to recover

  • karthikrby on June 25, 2014, 4:22 GMT

    I like the way english youngsters fought. SL reaping the rewards of experienced players. Same thing happened to india when there was a transition. This losing phase will come to SL once mahela/sanga/malinga/herath retires. Guys just understand the fact that always experienced team wins.

  • on June 25, 2014, 4:13 GMT

    Shankar Sri, Lara left his mark of 400 not out (and also made 375). Tendulkar's highest was only 248 not out. This despite playing on the easiest batting wickets in the history of Test cricket - Indian wickets.

  • on June 25, 2014, 4:06 GMT

    Srilanka is best test side than England we proofed that it last night...We never give up any thing up to last second because we are lions

  • sarangsrk on June 25, 2014, 3:56 GMT

    @Ajanthan Shantiratnam... Ind has played far better overseas than SL for number of years. Don't just go by what happened in 2011 with the ageing seniors. SL can't even perform consistently outside SL (India, Pak, UAE), forget abt Eng, SA, Aus. With all talks of Indian bowling being pathetic, India ran SA very close in the first test in SA last year on a flat, flat batting wicket (350+ runs scored on the last day). SL bowlers struggled to get Number 11 out for 83 minutes and 55 balls. The last review SL used when the ball was no where near to the stumps just showed the desperation. It was Eng top order batting flop show on day 4 else with 117 overs to play, any other decent batting order would have chased down 350. SL were just lucky to get Anderson out in the end. A draw would have been fair result yesterday.

  • on June 25, 2014, 3:20 GMT

    England is a much better team than Sri-Lanka...England is a young side..with experience they will get better.

  • on June 25, 2014, 3:10 GMT

    Big test against India? A team tht has played so many 5 test series and never won one?

  • Sir_Francis on June 25, 2014, 3:02 GMT

    Twenny-Twenny-Knight you seem to right on the ball. Why don't you offer your service as coach-captain-and the other 10 blokes. And VillageBlacksmith. What do you mean drastic changes? This team is unrecognisable from the one 12 months ago (and Stokes is also new). They have new CEO, selectors, coach etc. Pay attention man. They've already done the 'drastic" changes.

  • DarrylRod on June 25, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    I've seen the ashes and part of the SL tests. It shud come to the conclusion of the ECB and also to Cook that now is the time to look at acquiring a new captain. Cook just doesnt cut it(Pardon the punt). He has no initiative. He throws the balls to the same bowlers hoping to get a wicket. When that doesnt work, he plays around with the field setting. He hopes rather than plan to get wickets. Moores and Clarke shud seriously start doing more homework. England might just be at the bottom of the pile. Bette to do wholesale changes now and work to get it right rather than applying bandaids!

  • on June 25, 2014, 2:28 GMT

    when cook was in great form during india series..he was compared with tendulkar. cook is only possible candidate break tendulkar records.

    when I look when people are in gr8 form ...who ever it is...they are compared with tendulkar.

    and then it got filzes out in few years.

    master blaster is benchmark. rest are people who make a mark and leave...lol.

  • Humdingers on June 25, 2014, 2:10 GMT

    "If it was 84, we'd be sitting here with a smile on our faces."…really? Eng were expected to win this series! @R_U_4_REAL_NICK - this is India we are talking about. Eng could start the test tomorrow and they would still win in 3 days.

  • Sexysteven on June 25, 2014, 2:09 GMT

    Yea for the good of of England cricket cook should not be captain get amore positive character to captain then cook can focus on his batting then the selectors have to get the team there's some good young players coming through the only issue is to find a decent spinner to compliment the crop of good fast bowlers n good young batsman if selectors get the mix right I can see the poms getting back on track against India if they change the captain n be more positive

  • NKSathya on June 25, 2014, 1:53 GMT

    Don't worry dear Cook. You will get back to your best form of your life in the next series with India. World-wide every batsman looks up to Indian bowlers for hitting peak form!! Ask Pakistani & Sri Lankan batsmen or Brendon McCullum, they will vouch for what I say!! Brendon McCullum with such a poor technique hardly ever performs anywhere including NZ, but Indians mad him hit 300, the first triple century for a kiwi batsman!! Amazingly talented are Indian bowlers!! Anderson & Broad & Plunkett are going to have a party from July 9 till August 18....The 3 new rookies and Root are nicely warmed up in this tour to have a bash at Indians and break all records

    And don't worry too much Cook, Just wait until July 11 or 12 and you will be back to winning ways....and have a good chance of winning 5 - 0 and scoring a triple century!! Last time against India you missed it by 6 runs and this time around there's no missing!! All your worries will soon disappear from July 9 onwards...CHEER UP COOK!

  • on June 25, 2014, 1:48 GMT

    Well Done Angelo Matthews!! It was a great win a win which will be savoured by all in Sri Lanka. I thought Chandimal kept very well and we should think of using him as our regular keeper. You should also get Kusal Janith to open in all three formats. He is an inspirational batsman. The team has come a long way was from what it was. Good to see SL giving back in Sledging- Not that it should be encouraged but if you get it from the opposition know harm giving it back to people like Jo Root. You should do well in the future. Now is the time to beat South Africa and India and hope your run of successholds good until the world cup 2015. Good Luch Angele.

  • on June 25, 2014, 1:39 GMT

    @R_U_4_REAL_NICK- No, Ten days aren't enough to return back to form because form doesn't come back in nets, It comes back batting in the middle in a match situation.. And Cook will struggle against India too.. Not only his form but entire England side is low on confidence that's why they prepared flat tracks for Srilankan trundlers.. If they do the same thing against India then they will suffer the wrath of Indian batting and Indian spin bowling.. Ind 4-0 Eng .. The perfect revenge will be ours..

  • looloogun on June 25, 2014, 1:04 GMT

    after vaughan three players trescothick flintoff and pietersen were in line for english captaincy there are kings who had to do things to reach the throne strauss is one such type.kp was a honest man when he said he was not ready for captaincy ,but when he had to take over he wanted the right men around him ,strauss kept pushing kp the ex captain out of his zone always and he didnt allow him to play shorter formats etc for long and eventually kicked him out . just like kp cook is a nice person he wants the right people around him but he is making all the wrong choices but the good thing is he has ecb s faith.

  • Robster1 on June 25, 2014, 0:59 GMT

    Leadership for England both on and off the pitch plus awful administrators makes for a weak side. Time for change. Cook is just not a natural leader of men - whre is the next Greig, Brearley or Vaughan. That said, well played Sri Lanka.

  • Tiptop32 on June 25, 2014, 0:15 GMT

    Cook and england deserves this loss for having unjustly sacked great player KP. Being an Indian, I watch Eng cricket to see KP batting. Cook made a hill out of mole on KP which should have been settled without sacking KP. Without KP, England cricket is nothing.

  • CricketChat on June 25, 2014, 0:14 GMT

    Despite the loss when they seemed to be home, Eng team has won my heart and countless true cricket fans with their tremendous fight back today. Whether Cook is retained as captain or not (none can fault Eng selectors if they look for new leader after a fairly long dry run in tests), I feel he will come back strong as a batsman. Besides, Ind has a history of resurrecting failing careers in the past. Won't be surprised if Cook scored a boat load of runs against Ind soon.

  • CricketFanInCA on June 25, 2014, 0:08 GMT

    Cook has the batting Talent almost same as Michael Clarke but when it comes to Captaincy, he is inefficient. Cook has to face the reality and step down as Captain. Even world greatest ever batsman Sachin steps down from Captaincy within short period to improve his form. Captain cook is killing his batting skill and it affects England. Cook should give captaincy to someone like Broad who can handle pressure very well.

  • Manush on June 24, 2014, 23:51 GMT

    First sack Cook as captain if he really wants to serve England,let him quit. He does not deserve any sympathy and if continues as captain then English selectors must be biased. Most uninspiring captain.Turning to SriLanka, they showed what is resilience and team work let by an able captain.Congrats SriLanka for excellence and you have rubbed enough salt to English pride.What a fall from No.1 position this fast. Like a kid he was blaming all for the poor performance, let him follow his predecessors and resign if he has any grace left. Barring him everybody contributed in this short series.!!!

  • Cricket_theBestGame on June 24, 2014, 23:41 GMT

    sincere word of advice for cook from all comments here. he should listen to them. i've said this before, he says the right things but he himself does not sound convinced!

    someone had a good suggestion, bring one of the well regarded county captain who obviously can bat and let him manage the team. captaincy is beyond cook and coaching is beyond Moors. they should sack David Saker as well. eng bowlers bowled badly in australia and they continue to do that in eng. what is he teaching them??

  • ruester on June 24, 2014, 23:30 GMT

    Ghemrajani, I am no fan of Cooks and really think he is a terrible captain and should resign. However saying he cant play pace or swing is utter rubbish. Do you remember what he did in Australia when we won the ashes in Australia?

  • SoyQuearns on June 24, 2014, 23:20 GMT

    Dear oh dear - another horrble series lost to SL, and at home which English fans bleet about being a fortress of sorts because they've won about 3 series there in the last half decade.

    Cook didn't even get to 30 this series and only furthered his horrid reputation as a defensive and clueless captain.

    England's new bloods did well with the bat, so they can't blame them, it's the allegedly experienced and reliable parties who let the team down.

    Ali did commendable with bat in this 4th innings and chipped in with the ball, but the fact is England still have no spinner whatsoever on the horizon, and not a chance in hell of getting one of their bowlers to bowl at 150km/h.

    What a rapid, deep and all-encompassing decline.

    KP - I hope your celebratory champagne tasted good last night mate,you earned it.

    England in utter freefall, the only closeness in this game was the fact England clung on like limpets, SL all over them for the last 3 days of this match.

  • Webba84 on June 24, 2014, 23:13 GMT

    May not give up, but doesnt seem to learn or adapt either. Sheer bloody mindedness isnt enough to be captain, just ask Ponting.

  • Raymond92 on June 24, 2014, 22:55 GMT

    It's not about you Cook. Its about the team. The team needs a better leader. If KP was dropped for the morale off the team then you need to be dropped to get a better captain.

  • stumpedlloyd on June 24, 2014, 22:32 GMT

    Bring in Eoin Morgan and give him the captaincy. He has a keen cricketing mind, plays tough and hard, is inventive and imaginative, and can adapt to changing situations. Bring in another wicket-keeper. Foster? Buttler? Prior dropped some easy chances, including Kumar Sangakkara really early in his innings. Buttler can change a match and, yes, his wicket-keeping might need work, but he couldn't do worse than Prior. And start basing your pace attack around Plunkett.

  • on June 24, 2014, 22:29 GMT

    When one looks at the side and asks 'who is the natural captain if Cook goes', it isn't an easy choice. The answer appears to be 'Keven Pietersen', which is some kind of hollow joke at the moment.

  • geoffboyc on June 24, 2014, 22:20 GMT

    Yes, Peter Moores and Alastair Cook not a dream team but more like a nightmare. Nothing in Cook's observations about the ludicrous field placings and tactics on Monday afternoon that would have shamed a novice skipper. Clearly no one in the team felt able to point out to Cook that it was failing' If they did then they were over-ruled. Cook needs to bat his way back to form but the sad fact may be that teams now know how to bowl to him and he hasn't found the answers. There seems to be nothing in his comments that suggests he recognises his shortcomings as captain and that's usually the first step in putting things right. I feel sorry for Anderson and Moen who showed real application in tackling a situation that should never have arisen.

  • on June 24, 2014, 22:13 GMT

    Fact is Cook is a very good Batsman but a very mediocre Captain. It showed in Oz & now in the UK. Like so many before him the Captaincy has diminished his batting ability & he should relinquish it NOW. He is not worth his place as a batsman & certainly not just for his captaincy so the solution is obvious. Now we shall see what teh New England Management is made off. I suspect Jello.

  • __PK on June 24, 2014, 21:55 GMT

    What? A hangover from Australia? Seriously? Johnson bounced them out at 150 km/h but the Sri Lankans did it at 135 km/h.

  • Ellis on June 24, 2014, 21:45 GMT

    I am not an England fan. However, I think Cook is a decent guy and a very good batsman.He needs some space at this time and should be given it. A lot of the players for England are under pressure and deserve respite from the incessant hounding by the media. Everybody has bad days. Theirs are in full public view. Give them a break!

  • Twinkie on June 24, 2014, 21:37 GMT

    This Cook has a recipe for disaster and needs to get out of the kitchen!

  • Wenwynwynren on June 24, 2014, 21:27 GMT

    His batting is negatively affected by his captaincy; his captaincy negatively affecting the team on the field. The solution, however it comes to pass, is obvious.

    His form, fields and tactics, and press conferences belie the fact that he has too much to deal with which he is not comfortable and not prepared for. It's an incredibly tough job (and he has had some remarkable success) so there's no shame in not being brilliant at it.

    Saying "I never quit on anything" might sound admirable to some, but it's just a cliché and far from helpful. All the best for what he decides, but things look grim for Cook's captaincy.

  • liz1558 on June 24, 2014, 21:20 GMT

    There's an apt picture on this page - a picture of the Lusitania sinking in 1915. It's one thing - a noble thing - for the captain to go down with the ship, but it's another altogether to believe that he's still in control of it. Cook isn't a fool; he knows his time is up, but it looks better for him (less of a Kim Hughes debacle) if he's made to stand down by his manager. He can then offer his full support to whoever takes over without losing face. Which is fair enough. It's a decision that the manager is paid to make. Over to you Messrs Downton and Moores.

  • on June 24, 2014, 21:10 GMT

    A truly captivating final session of test cricket. England lost but some good things have come out of the last two tests. Firstly, Moeen Ali has shown a maturity beyond his years. A great find - he has the mental fortitude to succeed at this level. Secondly, Ballance and Robson posted their first centuries and look comfortable in their respective roles. Thirdly, Chris Jordan - he has shown real spirit and all round ability. Fourthly, Liam Pkumketts second coming. Finally, Ian Bell is a classy batsmen who adds some experience to the side The only worry is how weak management can harness a the positives and start winning again.....

  • Twenny-Twenny-Knight on June 24, 2014, 20:53 GMT

    I heard him speak on the radio to Aggers after the match and it was admirable, the expected attitude as a professional, but deep down I think he believes that the time has come to step back, (rather than down). He's saying all the right things, but somehow they're no longer credible.

    He's a great batsman, but not a great captain and we (as England supporters) need him back doing the former job alone as soon as possible.

    Moores also spoke and he's a lightweight, already found out after a couple of games in charge; clueless and out of his depth as an international coach; Pietersen pointed that out to them five years ago, but look what happened then!

    Clarke, Collier and Downton need to have a serious consideration of their respective positions - the England team is heading in totally the wrong direction for the modern game in all three disciplines...very sad.

  • on June 24, 2014, 20:46 GMT

    England will have to bring in an experienced County Captain and play him low down the order. Management has utterly screwed up player contingency, with the number of prospective players wrecked or ignored. This will be a painful few years, even with vision at the top.

  • xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx on June 24, 2014, 20:31 GMT

    There's a lot to like about Cook but sadly the "I never quit on anything" is, perhaps, a major reason he will always struggle with captaincy.

    Knowing when to quit on plan A and produce and switch to plan B or plan C is essential. All good captains have a natural skill and flexibility for this in addition to knowing how to get the best from a wide variety of characters - think Mike Brearley, Michael Vaughan and Michael Clarke (do all of the better captains have a first name of "Michael"?).

    I suspect someone is going to have to put Alastair out of his misery - for his own sake, for the sake of the team and, importantly, for the sake of newbies like Moeen Ali.

  • VillageBlacksmith on June 24, 2014, 20:08 GMT

    well played SL, totally deserved, the fake closeness of the result will no doubt stop Eng from making the drastic changes required and they will carry on failing… its not yr choice cook, if the management have any guts they will push you… for his own sake (and the paying public) cook must be relieved of the captaincy … the youngsters have shown the way forward in this series, and the old stagers have had v little input, and looked like old stagers… first cook must go and get his act together, second bell must go, he has been very poor and inconsequential in this and last series, and third its night night prior who has also been found out… bring in Lyth, Buttler and Taylor, and give the armband to anyone until the right guy comes along, thats the least of their problems… but again well played SL and obv well coached by C Adams, (but eng under their brave new era(!) really were pathetic)

  • on June 24, 2014, 19:50 GMT

    The key issue is Cook's form. He doesn't seem to be the type of man who inspires by words, and he's not a great tactician. So he has to inspire by deeds. He did that in India, and England won (we won't mention KP's contribution), which is an achievement. In the last year, however, he's scored no centuries, and averages about 25. What we can't tell is whether that's the loss of form that any batsman can suffer, or the captaincy weighing him down.

    The perception must be that Cook is a weak captain. He got rid of England's (statistically) best batsman as a "disruptive influence", and has been asking the ECB to silence Shane Warne (Warne would never regard his job as including spreading positivity about England!). Why Downton agreed to sack KP for being "disengaged" during the Sydney test is beyond me. The Ashes were long gone, and he could have sacked all 11 players on that basis.

  • on June 24, 2014, 19:38 GMT

    Cook proved s lot.. Now it's not a rite time to change the captain ahead of big test vs ind..

  • Big_Chikka on June 24, 2014, 19:38 GMT

    always said he should be his own man, now is that time..............he's right not to just give up......come on cook..! be a nice guy by all means, keep the grey suits happy too, but beat the next team....with a killer instinct!

  • GHemrajani on June 24, 2014, 19:34 GMT

    Cook has scored runs on slower turners and against medium pace. He has difficulties with swing, angling deliveries and express pace. This is not a question of determination but lack of ability. He has been found out by the opposition teams and his career will continue to decline.

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on June 24, 2014, 19:25 GMT

    Scorecard says Anderson faced 55 balls - not 56...

    Is ten days really enough to "prepare for India" and turn around such poor form? I sure hope so...

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on June 24, 2014, 19:25 GMT

    Scorecard says Anderson faced 55 balls - not 56...

    Is ten days really enough to "prepare for India" and turn around such poor form? I sure hope so...

  • GHemrajani on June 24, 2014, 19:34 GMT

    Cook has scored runs on slower turners and against medium pace. He has difficulties with swing, angling deliveries and express pace. This is not a question of determination but lack of ability. He has been found out by the opposition teams and his career will continue to decline.

  • Big_Chikka on June 24, 2014, 19:38 GMT

    always said he should be his own man, now is that time..............he's right not to just give up......come on cook..! be a nice guy by all means, keep the grey suits happy too, but beat the next team....with a killer instinct!

  • on June 24, 2014, 19:38 GMT

    Cook proved s lot.. Now it's not a rite time to change the captain ahead of big test vs ind..

  • on June 24, 2014, 19:50 GMT

    The key issue is Cook's form. He doesn't seem to be the type of man who inspires by words, and he's not a great tactician. So he has to inspire by deeds. He did that in India, and England won (we won't mention KP's contribution), which is an achievement. In the last year, however, he's scored no centuries, and averages about 25. What we can't tell is whether that's the loss of form that any batsman can suffer, or the captaincy weighing him down.

    The perception must be that Cook is a weak captain. He got rid of England's (statistically) best batsman as a "disruptive influence", and has been asking the ECB to silence Shane Warne (Warne would never regard his job as including spreading positivity about England!). Why Downton agreed to sack KP for being "disengaged" during the Sydney test is beyond me. The Ashes were long gone, and he could have sacked all 11 players on that basis.

  • VillageBlacksmith on June 24, 2014, 20:08 GMT

    well played SL, totally deserved, the fake closeness of the result will no doubt stop Eng from making the drastic changes required and they will carry on failing… its not yr choice cook, if the management have any guts they will push you… for his own sake (and the paying public) cook must be relieved of the captaincy … the youngsters have shown the way forward in this series, and the old stagers have had v little input, and looked like old stagers… first cook must go and get his act together, second bell must go, he has been very poor and inconsequential in this and last series, and third its night night prior who has also been found out… bring in Lyth, Buttler and Taylor, and give the armband to anyone until the right guy comes along, thats the least of their problems… but again well played SL and obv well coached by C Adams, (but eng under their brave new era(!) really were pathetic)

  • xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx on June 24, 2014, 20:31 GMT

    There's a lot to like about Cook but sadly the "I never quit on anything" is, perhaps, a major reason he will always struggle with captaincy.

    Knowing when to quit on plan A and produce and switch to plan B or plan C is essential. All good captains have a natural skill and flexibility for this in addition to knowing how to get the best from a wide variety of characters - think Mike Brearley, Michael Vaughan and Michael Clarke (do all of the better captains have a first name of "Michael"?).

    I suspect someone is going to have to put Alastair out of his misery - for his own sake, for the sake of the team and, importantly, for the sake of newbies like Moeen Ali.

  • on June 24, 2014, 20:46 GMT

    England will have to bring in an experienced County Captain and play him low down the order. Management has utterly screwed up player contingency, with the number of prospective players wrecked or ignored. This will be a painful few years, even with vision at the top.

  • Twenny-Twenny-Knight on June 24, 2014, 20:53 GMT

    I heard him speak on the radio to Aggers after the match and it was admirable, the expected attitude as a professional, but deep down I think he believes that the time has come to step back, (rather than down). He's saying all the right things, but somehow they're no longer credible.

    He's a great batsman, but not a great captain and we (as England supporters) need him back doing the former job alone as soon as possible.

    Moores also spoke and he's a lightweight, already found out after a couple of games in charge; clueless and out of his depth as an international coach; Pietersen pointed that out to them five years ago, but look what happened then!

    Clarke, Collier and Downton need to have a serious consideration of their respective positions - the England team is heading in totally the wrong direction for the modern game in all three disciplines...very sad.

  • on June 24, 2014, 21:10 GMT

    A truly captivating final session of test cricket. England lost but some good things have come out of the last two tests. Firstly, Moeen Ali has shown a maturity beyond his years. A great find - he has the mental fortitude to succeed at this level. Secondly, Ballance and Robson posted their first centuries and look comfortable in their respective roles. Thirdly, Chris Jordan - he has shown real spirit and all round ability. Fourthly, Liam Pkumketts second coming. Finally, Ian Bell is a classy batsmen who adds some experience to the side The only worry is how weak management can harness a the positives and start winning again.....