England Skipper in Test format, Alastair Cook, who was appointed in 2012 in August, has decided to step down from the post of the skipper after leading England successfully in 59 Tests. The 32-year old England Cricketer is England's most capped Test captain, has scored more Test centuries than any of the previous captains. Not only Cook has led England to various victories but he has scored 11,057 runs in 140 Test matches.
Talking about his decision, According to the England Cricket Board Press release Cook, said, "It’s been a huge honour to be England captain and to lead the Test team over the past five years.Stepping down has been an incredibly hard decision but I know this is the correct decision for me and at the right time for the team."
ECB.CO.UK, further quoted from Cook's resignation, "I’ve had time to reflect after the India series and this weekend I spoke to Colin Graves, the Chairman, to explain and offer my resignation. It’s a sad day personally in many ways but I want to thank everyone I’ve captained, all the coaches and support staff and, of course, the England supporters and the Barmy Army who follow us home and away and have given us unwavering support. Playing for England really is a privilege and I hope to carry on as a Test player, making a full contribution and helping the next England captain and the team however I can.”
Paying tribute to Cook's leadership, Director of England Cricket, Andrew Strauss, said, "I want to thank Alastair, on behalf of the ECB and from a personal perspective, for the fantastic contribution that he’s made to the England Test team since taking over as Captain in 2012."
While the speculations are Joe Root will be Cook's successor, no such things were clarified by Strauss, however he did added that they have started the process, "We now move on with the process of appointing the right successor. There are a number of established players who are playing formal or informal leadership roles and whilst we've rightly not spoken to anyone in relation to the Test captaincy so far, we can now talk fully and openly within the team. We expect to be able to make an announcement before the team head to the West Indies on 22nd February.”
ECB Chairman Colin Graves also paid his tributes. "Alastair called me this weekend to offer his resignation and to explain the reasons behind it. This was clearly a very hard decision and I thoroughly respect the way it’s been made, with the team at the core of his thinking. "
Tom Harrison, Chief Executive Officer of the ECB, also paid his tribute, “Alastair has played a huge role as England Test captain and he is without any doubt a fantastic"