A take on Alastair Cook's all-time XI
Arguably the best English batsman of all time, Alastair cook recently announced his retirement from international cricket. Cook has been an exceptional cricketer for England, a perfect role model for any youngster who wants to play cricket for his country. A fierce competitor with a calm demeanour.
Cook has scored runs all around the world which puts him in a high pedestal. A few days back he announced his all-time favourite Test eleven. He categorically mentioned that he has picked the eleven on the basis of either the players he has played with or against. Goes without saying that Cook has a right to an opinion on cricketers he has played with or against like everyone else.
Let's pick some players who are not outright choices in any all-time playing eleven, to see how good they are under varying conditions.
#1 Graham Gooch
It appears that the primary reason for choosing Gooch as an opening batsman and the captain of his side is their Essex connection. Cook must have seen Gooch from close quarters as a player. Watching someone from close quarters gives you a lot of insights about a person.
Gooch had an average record in Tests, he played 113 Test matches and scored 8900 runs at a modest average of 42.58 with 20 centuries.
Talking about alien conditions, Gooch played 13 matches in sub-continent and scored 869 runs at an average of 39.5 with just 1 century. Looking at the above record, I am sure there have been better opening batsmen amongst, players Cook played with or against.