It would be a pity if one unhappy summer – some lacklustre batting, the Test defeat by South Africa and England's loss of its No 1 world Test ranking – were allowed to colour the rest of Andrew Strauss's cricketing career.
To captain England, in any sport, is never a picnic, still less given the circumstances in which Strauss found the responsibility thrust upon him. But he held the position with distinction for the best part of four years. And he left, as he had led, decisively, without self-pity and with impressive candour. In denying that the Kevin Pietersen affair had influenced the timing of his departure, he surely spoke the truth. But it had hardly made his job easier. With that episode now in the past, Strauss is to be remembered for his 100 Test appearances, his two Ashes triumphs and some of the most exciting finishes in recent memory. Alastair Cook has a hard act to follow.