Former English legend, Michael Atherton has backed Alastair Cook's decision of resigning from his positions from being the English test team.
England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has accepted the decision of Cook on Sunday. He had served as a captain for almost five years and under his leadership, the team has won record 59 tests.
Joe Root is expected to step into the role as England's test skipper, who is currently one of the best test batsmen in the world. During a chat with sky sports, Atherton said: "It's not a surprising one, I don't think. Those of us who were in India at the end of the year saw the look in his eyes at the end of that Test series; it was a very heavy defeat. He looked exhausted at the end of that."
He further added, "Sometimes if you go away and have a break it can change your mind, but after four years in the job I think he realized he'd had enough. Once you get to that point you know yourself and no-one can change your mind. There's no reason why he wouldn't stay on the side, he's only 32 and he's got plenty of time left, but that's down to the new captain."
Atherton also conceded that Cook will surely be playing for the country similarly to the good old days. He said, "Once you're not captain yourself, you are no longer guaranteed a place in the side. It's down to the new captain and the selectors but it's hard to see why Cook wouldn't carry on. Other captains have carried on beyond their time as captain. There's no reason why he shouldn't carry on."
He further elaborated, "If you have done the job as long as Cook has, to be honest, it's a relief to get rid of it at that point. You can just carry on, enjoy your cricket, you're not making the decisions and that's an enjoyable place to be."
Atherton concluded by further taking the side of Cook, he said, "I don't think Cook is the type who absolutely demands leadership. I think he will be very happy sitting in the back seat and enjoying his time as a player. I can't see him as the type to make life difficult for a new captain. So I'm sure he will carry on and I'm sure Joe Root if it is Joe Root, would want him on the side."