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Five potential replacements for Alastair Cook

ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
11.41K   //    10 Sep 2018, 15:24 IST

England v India: Specsavers 5th Test - Day Three
England v India: Specsavers 5th Test - Day Three

In almost 140 years of Test match cricket, the England team has not had a more prolific run-getter than Alastair Cook. At 33, it may seem a bit too soon to hang up one’s boots, but the simple fact remains that he is a legend. Not just in England cricket folklore, but in the context of world cricket. And nobody can take that away from him.

Most Indian fans would remember the first ever sighting of Alastair Cook. It was the summer of 2006 and the lanky Chef strolled out to open the batting with Andrew Strauss. There was no flair, no flamboyance about the way he went about his batting, but the one aspect of his batting that separated him from the rest was the solidity in defence.

The numbers and the stats are there for all to see. However, it would definitely seem as though the Gentleman Cook has transcended the record-breaking Alastair Cook. Having played for as long as he has, it is almost certain that Cook would indeed give it away.

And now, it would also seem as though the stuffed shirts behind the banners and doldrums of the ECB have a job on their hands. While looking for a replacement for Cook, these five players will certainly be the ones the ECB will have their eye on:

#1) Alex Hales

Somerset v Nottinghamshire Outlaws - Vitality Blast Quarter-Final
Somerset v Nottinghamshire Outlaws - Vitality Blast Quarter-Final

Alex Hales is anything but the regular archetypal English cricketer. He is far from the big-bellied, unfit England opener from the mid-1980s. Boasting of immense fitness and ability to strike the ball with ease, it is clear that Hales is a favourite to partner Keaton Jennings atop the order in the all-white for England.

However, the ECB selection committee is rather well-versed in Hales' experiment when it comes to Test cricket. As a matter of fact, Hales has featured in 11 Tests so far for his country. And for the most part, he has let the selectors down with 573 runs in 21 innings. He debuted in the Boxing Day Test match against South Africa in Durban and batted alongside Alastair Cook.

In spite of winning the Test by a rather wide margin, Hales managed just the 10 more Test matches and has not featured in the Test team for over two years. However, given his exploits in the ODI and T20 formats, Hales is quite clearly a frontrunner to partner Jennings once Cook’s career is done and dusted.

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