Alastair Cook bids farewell to cricket

Alastair Cook

LONDON: Alastair Cook, the iconic figure in English cricket and former Test captain, has bid a fond farewell to his professional cricketing career. The announcement of his retirement, which had been the subject of much speculation during the final rounds of the LV Insurance County Championship, was finally confirmed by Cook himself.

In a poignant statement shared on the Essex website, Cook delved into the emotional aspects of his departure. He reflected on his remarkable journey, which commenced at the age of eight with Wickham Bishops Under 11s and culminated in a stellar career spanning more than two decades. Cook nostalgically recounted the friendships formed, the far-flung places he had the privilege of visiting, and the extraordinary accomplishments that defined his life in cricket.

Cook expressed in his statement on the Essex website, “Today, I am announcing my retirement and the conclusion of my career as a professional cricketer. Saying goodbye is never easy. For over two decades, cricket has meant more to me than just a job. It has opened doors to places I never imagined I would tread, allowed me to be part of teams that achieved what I thought was impossible, and, most significantly, enabled me to foster enduring friendships that will stand the test of time.”

Although he bid adieu to international cricket in 2018, the 38-year-old continued to contribute to the Essex county team. His commitment bore fruit as he played a pivotal role in Essex’s victories in the Division One title in 2019 and the subsequent Bob Willis Trophy.

Cook expressed his gratitude to Essex, the county that welcomed him at the tender age of 12. He extended his heartfelt appreciation, saying, “I owe a massive debt of gratitude to Essex, the county I joined when I was 12. I want to express my immense thanks to everyone at Chelmsford for all that you have given me. The fans, the members, and the staff have consistently provided unwavering support, patience, and generosity.”

Throughout his illustrious career, Cook amassed over 26,000 first-class runs, with 11,337 of those earned for Essex. His prowess was not limited to the longer format; he amassed an additional 7,500 runs in limited-overs cricket. Beyond the cricket pitch, Cook ventured into media work during his playing days, notably serving as a Test Match Special summarizer for the BBC.

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