India in England, 2007 August 23, 2007

Cook calls for consistency



Cook: keen to carry on from the Rose Bowl, the Australian way © Getty Images

Alastair Cook has warned that England's 104-run thrashing of India in their one-day opener will count for little unless they back it up during the remaining six games of the series. England's best limited-overs display since before the World Cup saw Cook and Ian Bell both score maiden centuries before James Anderson's career-best return finished the deal.

Cook, who laid the platform with a patient 102, said: "The ability to tough out a result when you're up against it is a skill that good teams have, it is what Australia have done for so long and it really only comes with the experience of winning matches. That is the next challenge for us.

"We're really excited about what we did on Tuesday but it will mean very little if it stands out on its own for the rest of the summer."

Cook, 22, said consistency was the key to England improving their low standing in one-day cricket. "There is no point putting in one performance like that with two hundreds and then forgetting about it."

Cook's place in the one-day line-up was under scrutiny after five previous appearances had not even yielded a half-century. Bell too was under pressure before scoring a hundred in what was his 48th ODI. "I'd played a few games and got a couple of forties but I hadn't really made a score so to get to three figures, especially at the start of your career, is always nice," said Cook. "It shows you and everyone else that you can do it. Now it's up to me to repeat it as I have done in Test-match cricket."

England will again be without left-arm pace bowler Ryan Sidebottom for Friday's match and Monday's third fixture at Edgbaston after he failed to overcome a side strain he sustained during the third and final Test against India at The Oval nearly two weeks ago.