Cook getting used to being boss

New England Test captain Alastair Cook admits he is still readjusting to life in his new role

New England Test captain Alastair Cook admits he is still readjusting to life in his new role

First published in National Sport News © by

Alastair Cook is still readjusting to life as England's Test match, as well as one-day international, captain.

Cook led England to a six-wicket win over South Africa at Lord's on Sunday - a result which means they will stay at the top of the International Cricket Council rankings for the rest of this year, whether or not they close out NatWest Series success in the final match at Trent Bridge on Wednesday.

Asked if it feels as if life has changed since he replaced Andrew Strauss, who retired five days ago, Cook said: "It doesn't yet. It might do in a few days' time, when Test selection comes up and all the planning for the future. But at the moment, it doesn't feel any different."

Back-to-back victories at The Oval on Friday, and then at HQ, came at the end of a week in which Strauss bowed out from all professional cricket and Cook replaced him as Test captain.

But the new incumbent, his country's ODI leader for more than a year now, senses he will start to feel different about his role only when Test match planning starts in earnest after this series is done.

That, of course, is sure to include management meetings on the subject - among others - of Kevin Pietersen's England future.

The England and Wales Cricket Board remain steadfast in their non-confirmation of a reported meeting on Saturday between Pietersen and coach Andy Flower to try to broker a reconciliation for the South Africa-born batsman after his summer of turmoil.

Whether Pietersen can be forgiven or not, for his contract wrangles and text messages about Strauss to opposition players, will have a direct bearing on Cook's captaincy.

Cook is encouraged, for both the immediate and longer term, by the batting form of Ian Bell (88) and Eoin Morgan - who helped England ease to victory in pursuit of 220 for eight on Sunday.

"Morgs had a really tough winter, and has gone away and worked really hard on his technique," he said. "He's hitting the ball as cleanly as I've seen him for a long time."

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