Alastair Cook laughs off comparisons with Sir Donald Bradman
England Test skipper Alastair Cook expressed satisfaction at scoring his 29th century in the longer format at of the game that brought him level with the legendary Sir Donald Bradman but laughed off comparisons with the former Australian cricketer who had achieved the feat in just 52 Test matches.
Cook’s previous Test century also came against the same opposition back in October 2015 in Abu Dhabi, more than 10 Tests ago, and the skipper expressed relief that he was able to reach the three-figure mark, especially at a time when his side needed most as England look to make their way back into the series after losing the opening Test at Lord’s by 75 runs.
“It’s been a while since I scored a hundred for England,” said Cook after the day’s play. “First-innings runs, as always in any Test match, are vital. I can’t really compare (to Bradman) when he did it in half the games or even less. So it’s just nice to get past 28 (hundreds).”
Cook found able support from Joe Root who brought up his ninth Test century after playing an almost faultless innings during his nine-hour stay at the crease. The 25-year-old said that it was a calculated ploy to place extra importance on his wicket by controlling his aggression and was happy that the move paid off.
Take a bow Alastair Cook!What a player!He's copped so much over the years,for me there's nobody as mentally strong in world cricket!#ENGvPAK— James Taylor (@jamestaylor20) July 22, 2016
Youngest to 29th Test 100— Mohandas Menon (@mohanstatsman) July 22, 2016
28y-360d Sachin Tendulkar
31y-95d Ricky Ponting
31y-210d Alastair Cook#EngvPak
“I’ve felt in good touch all summer, but I’ve found some stupid ways to get out,” Root said. “I worked really hard today, to graft. Maybe not score at the rate I have done previously over the last couple of years, but if that’s what it’s going to take to score big hundreds that’s what I’m going to have to do.”
Unlike at the Lord’s, Pakistan seamer Mohammad Amir was subjected to a few taunts by a section of the Old Trafford crowd who wanted to remind him oh his involvement in the spot-fixing scandal in 2010. Cook chose to shrug away the distraction claiming that he was focussed on his own batting and added that what is important that the two sets of players from both countries play the game in the right spirit.
“I actually didn’t notice them (spectators) calling no-balls. I suppose that’s probably quite a good sign, that I’m thinking about more important things,” Cook said. “I said at the beginning of the series that at some stage that might happen. There’s got to be some consequence, a little bit, of what he did. But I think the most important thing is the way both sides, so far in the series, have got on and played good cricket.”