Alastair Cook: England finally axe Cook as one-day captain

Cook oversaw a fourth straight series defeat in the recent tour of Sri Lanka and has not scored an ODI century in 45 matches

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The Independent Online

Alastair Cook has been sacked as England’s one-day cricket captain, ending his dream of leading the team in the World Cup, after the selectors decided his position  was untenable.

Eoin Morgan will captain the side in Australia early in January for a triangular series which will be followed by the World Cup, a tournament England have never won.

COMMENT: Loyalty went too far - now Cook's exit smacks of panic

Until Friday’s turn of events Cook’s position, while vulnerable, looked unassailable for the next few months. A few days ago in Sri Lanka the team’s coach, Peter Moores, and the managing director of England cricket, Paul Downton both backed him.

Cook will remain England''s Test captain

But the 5-2 reversal on the tour, England’s fifth consecutive series loss under Cook, allied to his lack of batting form, persuaded the selectors to act. Downton said he would not stand in the way of the selectors if they felt a change  was necessary.

Morgan’s elevation is predictable but still a gamble. His recent batting displays have been every bit as unsuccessful as Cook’s, with only 90 runs in seven innings in Sri Lanka and one fifty in his last  19 innings.

The clear hope is that the captaincy will be the making of him. Morgan, a confident and open Irishman, lacks  no belief in himself as either performer or leader.

Cook may consider himself unfortunate but his last press conference as England captain suggested he may have known what was coming. “No one has got any divine right to play for England,” he said.

“This year in the one day game certainly I haven’t been good enough, I can’t have any complaints if the decision goes against me.”