Cook concerned by ICC and ECB attitudes to Test cricket

England's Test-match specialist Alastair Cook is worried the history and tradition of Test cricket could lose out to shorter formats.

England opener Alastair Cook   -  Getty Images

Former England captain Alastair Cook has questioned the ICC's desire to protect Test cricket and is concerned the ECB's new 100-ball format means it is not one of their priorities either.

Test-match specialist Cook - England's leading run scorer in the longest format - last featured in a one-day international for England in 2014, while he has not made a Twenty20 appearance since 2009.

The ECB this month announced the introduction of a domestic competition consisting of 100 deliveries for each team from 2020.

With plenty of focus being put on the limited-overs arena, Cook is worried that ensuring Tests also remain popular is being forgotten.

Asked if he thought the ICC and ECB care about Test cricket, the left-hander told BBC Radio 5 Live's Sportsweek: "Ultimately I don't think they do at the moment.

"I don't know that [is the case] for the ECB, because a lot of revenue comes in from Test cricket in our country. We're different to every other nation. We've got unbelievable support in our country for Test cricket everywhere.

"I think we are very different and that's the problem I see, that we see a very different side of Test cricket to the rest of the world. But as we know money does speak and it's going to be very interesting in the next 10 years."

On how to persuade children about the merits of Test cricket, Cook added: "I think the question is, 'Does cricket want that?' If cricket generally does want to preserve Test cricket and the traditions of it and the 100-year history then there needs to be thought about it.

"But if it doesn't, because that's what happening in the modern day and times change, then that's fine. It'd be sad in my opinion. I know a lot of people say that because I don't play that much T20 of course I'm going to say that and protect Test cricket, but at the moment I think there's still a lot of love towards it, especially from the players.

"What I love, and a lot of people love, is the pure satisfaction of winning like Essex won the other day, over three days of hard cricket, a Test match hundred where you fight six hours for it - do we want to lose that from our game? I don't think we do, but obviously the way we're going, all this stuff it's hard not to.

"The question is, 'Does cricket want to save Test cricket?' And then it's, 'How do we do that?'"

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