Former Australia fast bowler, Mitchell Johnson admitted that Alastair Cook had been a champion following the latter’s international retirement when he last played at The Oval in London against India.

Meanwhile, both the legends had their face-offs several times over the years. The duo had met nineteen times in the Ashes Test cricket. Johnson has taken the wicket of Cook for nine times which was not comfortable for Cook to digest.

Cook didn’t let it go for Johnson’s way and scored unbeaten 235 in Brisbane Test in 2010 and 189 in Sydney in 2011.

Moreover, Johnson conveyed that Cook has shown his class of cricket scoring a century on his debut and the last match of his career. Both the hundred came against India. The former cricketer anticipated Cook to bid farewell a few years before.

“I thought he was going to retire a few years ago, he’s not at his best. But he’s just shown what a class act he is. Scores a hundred on his debut, scores a hundred to finish off his career.” Johnson added.

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Johnson is 36, and Cook some way past 33 – you’d think it’s too early to quit, for both of them. Especially for a batsman it too early to retire from cricket.

“He’s still only young, but he’s played a lot of (Test) cricket, some 160-odd games, I think. Cooky, he’s been a champion. I’ve always had the utmost respect for him as a player and a person. Off the field, he’s just a genuinely nice guy. Also, on the field, always a tough competitor. A typical Test cricketer,” Johnson said.

England v India 2018, ICC Test Rankings, Alastair Cook
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Alastair Cook knew when to play shots:

Although he seems to like playing gritty innings spending time at the crease, Cook knew when to go off the blocks. The southpaw had 1,442 fours and 11 sixes to his name in Test cricket.

He knew there were periods he had to block and let go, and really dig deep. Moments when he had to attack, and he did that on his own terms, played the game the way he wanted to play it and never let anyone tell him otherwise. Didn’t listen to the critics and just enjoyed himself,” Mitchell Johnson concluded.

For England, Alastair Cook delivered the punch in his last Test in London. He had faced Mitchell Johnson with such diligence.