Terming Alastair Cook’s recent batting failures as a ‘recipe for resignation’, batting great Geoffrey Boycott has called for the England captain to give up his position as the captain of the side after the 29-year-old was dismissed cheaply, yet again, in the second innings of the 2nd Test match against Sri Lanka at Headingley, Leeds.
"Cook is in that sort of form where he'll get out in ways he couldn't dream up. That was a short long hop which he pulls well, it's one of his favourite shots, and he got an under-side edge onto the stumps.
"It's like when you're playing well and you can plunder runs from anywhere. He cannot get a run, he'll get tenser, it'll get harder for him and I don't know how he's going to get out of it. We've had a very, very bad day. We thought the nightmare of Australia was over, but it's still here. This is a side... I don't know where we go. From a winning position we will lose, the captain is in terrible form and it's a recipe for resignation. I don't know if he will but it is," the 73-year-old former England batsman told the Test Match Special podcast about Cook’s lack of form.
Cook has failed to cross the three-figure mark in his last 25 innings for England. In his last 12 Test matches, the left-hander averages an appalling 25.04 runs per dismissal with only 6 half-centuries.
Despite not enjoying the best of form, the under-fire captain managed to get past Boycott to occupy the 5th position in the leading run-scorer list for England in Test matches. Saying that Cook seems to be fine as an individual player in the team, he, however, questioned his abilities as a leader and blamed his field placings that didn’t threaten the Lankan tail.
He said: "I want to be fair to him because I love him, he's a lovely boy. My daughter has a boyfriend but if she didn't and went out with him, I mean when he was single, he's a lovely lad, one of the nicest people you could wish (to meet).
"He's a top batsman just in bad form, but he's a smashing lad. I have no problem with him setting that field, none at all. When it doesn't work, that's when I have a problem with it. Where's the innovation, the invention, the try-something-different?"
The former England international also had some harsh words to say for England’s senior most bowlers James Anderson and Stuart Broad. While Anderson picked up 5 wickets in the match, he was guilty of not being consistently threatening; Broad, on the other hand, failed to add any more to his hat-trick in the first innings.
Boycott said: "I won't say we've played rubbish but there have been moments when we have been rubbish.”
"I'm trying to be honest and sensible and not have any histrionics because we've had a bad day but this was pathetic. The bowling of Anderson, one of the best bowlers in the world, swing and seam... We've had two new balls this second innings and he's bowled some tripe at times. He's swung it, cut it, made it bounce, but it's either been too full, too wide and short, down leg side, there's no wonder he doesn't get wickets at Headingley.”
"I'm only telling the truth, I don't take any pleasure talking about a great bowler like Jimmy, and he's a wonderful swing and seam bowler, his record is fabulous, and Stuart Broad hasn't been that much better. You have to use words like rubbish and pathetic at times. Two of the finest bowlers in the world, they are not young kids in their first Test matches. Stuart Broad, (Graeme Swann) Swanny says, says he believes he bowls as fast as Michael Holding, I wish he did he might have won the match for us," added Boycott, targetting the lack of penetration of the England bowlers that led to the Sri Lankan recovery.
Published 24 Jun 2014, 13:24 IST