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England opener Alastair Cook has admitted that he shed a few tears when informing his teammates that he would be retiring from international cricket.
Cook, who will bring his career to an end after the fifth Test against India at The Oval, revealed that he told captain Joe Root about his decision prior to the fourth Test in Southampton and head coach Trevor Bayliss during the match.
After England won the match by 60 runs, which gave them an unassailable 3-1 series lead, Cook told his other teammates while they were having a beer.
“I told Rooty before the game, then [England head coach] Trevor Bayliss during the game,” the 33-year-old, who is England’s highest run-scorer in Test cricket, was quoted as saying by The Metro. “I was a couple of beers in when I told the guys which I needed to be. There were a few tears but I managed to hold it together.
“I told everyone it was time. There was silence for a bit and then Mo [Ali] said something, everyone laughed and we got on with it.
“If the series was 2-2 I would have kept my mouth shut. If I could play a really good innings [in his final match at The Oval] that would be fantastic.”
Cook will continue playing county cricket for Essex next year, but admitted that for the past six months, he knew his international career was drawing to a close.
“For me I’ve always had that mental edge and been mentally strong,” he said. “That edge had kind of gone. The stuff I used to find easy wasn’t quite there.”
When asked about the highlights of his career, Cook admitted that winning the Ashes in Australia in 2010/11 and triumphing in India in 2012 for the first time in 28 years was right at the top of his list.
“You cant look past those two away series,” he said. “That’s the best I could play and that means a lot because I’ve never been the most talented cricketer.
Upon being questioned about his regrets, the former captain said: “I don’t think I would change much. Clearly the KP [Kevin Pietersen] affair was a tough year, there’s no doubt about that. The fall-out from that wasn’t great for English cricket or me.”