England v India: Alastair Cook ‘desperate’ to end poor form

Alastair Cook insists that he is "desperate" to help reverse England's fortunes after Test defeat by India at Lord's

The Sport Review staff
By The Sport Review staff

Alastair Cook insists that he is “desperate” to help reverse England’s fortunes after they slumped to a 95-run defeat by India in the second Test at Lord’s to extend their winless run to 10 matches.

The hosts crumbled after lunch following a series of poor shots and were bowled out for 223 on the final day to hand the tourists a 1-0 lead in the five-match series.

Joe Root (66) and Moeen Ali (39) had given Cook’s men hope with a partnership of 101 to take them to 173-4, 146 runs short of their target.

But Moeen fell to the last ball before lunch and Matt Prior, Ben Stokes and Root were all out in a disastrous 14-minute spell, as India seamer Ishant Sharma took 7-74.

The defeat will further increase the pressure on captain Cook, but the 29-year-old is determined to prove himself in the remainder of the series and vowed not to stand down as captain.

“It’s an issue with confidence, getting over that line,” Cook told BBC Sport. “We are desperate to win for England. The longer that builds up, it is going to take a serious performance.

I’m desperate to turn it around. I’m here until the end of the summer

Alastair Cook

“A lot of the standout performances have been from the younger players. The older guys aren’t playing as well as their record suggests. I’ve got to start scoring runs as well.”

Cook continued: “It gets harder and harder the more we don’t win. It heaps it on me. Until I’m tapped on the shoulder, I’m desperate to turn it around. I’m here until the end of the summer.

“I’ve got an inner steel, which I have to keep drawing on. I have to score some runs. A 10 and a 20 didn’t seem a lot, but I hit the ball better.

“It’s tough, it’s been tough for a while now. We’ve had some fantastic times but now we’re in the middle of the darkest times I’ve experienced. We’ve just got to front up: there are no excuses. It will need iron-will and skill to turn this around.

“I’m not trying to prove anyone wrong. When I was made England captain, I told my wife I would give it my all. If it’s not to be, so be it but I believe the team needs me to lead them through this tough time.

“If it gets to the stage where my position becomes untenable, I will be honest to myself. To quit now, in the middle of the series, would be wrong. I’m desperate to try and turn this around.”

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