Alastair Cook signed off from Test cricket with a stunning ton in the fifth England vs India Test and admitted: ‘Sometimes dreams come true’.
The script was perhaps written in the heaven when Alastair Cook came out to bat at The Oval – his final appearance for England. Prior to the ongoing game in the English capital, the southpaw had endured a wretched time in the series. However, he roared back to form in his farewell game to end his glittering career in the best possible manner. In fact, the way the game panned out, it made the cricketing world recall Cook’s debut Test which had turned out in the same manner.
Against the same opposition, he began his international career with a fifty and a century. And 12 years later, he bowed out of the game by slamming 71 and 147.
The England great has already received over 10 standing ovations at The Oval as his retirement draws near. Cook will depart as England’s most decorated Test player, having scored more runs and centuries in Tests than any of his compatriots.
Speaking at the end of the day four’s play, Cook described his experience at The Oval as ‘the most surreal four days of my life’.
“Ever since [my England retirement] was announced, I suppose you hope you have a good week. To top it off with a score here is just incredible. Sometimes dreams come true,” Cook said.
“On a purely selfish level, even at the end, fielding at short leg with the Barmy Army singing, it’s why you play sport – occasionally those little selfish moments. It was very special. It’s just been a great week.
“It was a ‘don’t get out for nought’ game for me,” added Cook. “I didn’t really think about the hundred until I got into the eighties and I felt I had a chance.
The former England skipper further revealed the ovations had made him emotional as he reflected on his dream farewell game.
“It was very emotional – there was definitely a lump in my throat with that ovation. I had about 30 friends here and family, so you couldn’t have scripted it. It’s one of those days where you will look back and forever go ‘Wow’.
“I remember seeing Nasser [Hussain] score a hundred in his final Test and I thought: ‘What a great way to finish!’ For me to say the last time I batted for England I got a hundred is special,” he added.
Coming to the game, Cook looks set to end his England career with a thumping win. Chasing an improbable 464, India were 58 for 3 at stumps.