Alastair Cook scored a century in his final test innings as England took complete control on Day 4 of the fifth test against India at the Oval on Monday.
Playing in his 161st and final test match, England’s leading test run-scorer began the day on 46 and played fluidly to bring up his 33rd test century from 210 balls.
Cook’s 168-run third-wicket partnership with his successor as captain, Joe Root (81 not out), has taken England’s second innings to 230-2, establishing a 270-run lead shortly before lunch.
Cook, who scored 71 in England’s first innings, had already received two standing ovations on Monday before reaching three figures.
- First he brought up his half century, securing a test career average of above 45 in the process.
- Then, on reaching 76, Cook became fifth highest test run-scorer of all time, going past Sri Lankan Kumar Sangakarra’s 12,400 to also become the leading left-handed batsman.
He brought up the landmark he and the crowd wanted most in the strangest of circumstances, as what appeared to be a single to take him to 97, became five, as Jasprit Bumrah’s throw to the non-striker’s end went for four overthrows, taking Cook to 101.
England already holds an unassailable 3-1 lead in the five-match series, but is well placed to widen its victory margin.
Cook’s finale comes at the same London ground that Australian great Donald Bradman made a duck at in his final test innings, denying him a career average of above 100.
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