Birmingham - Alastair Cook suggested Joe Root was the best
England batsman he had played alongside after they both marked the country's
entry into day/night Test cricket with hundreds against the West Indies at
Edgbaston on Thursday.
Cook, already England's leading Test run-scorer and
century-maker, ended the first day 153 not out in a commanding total of 348 for
The ex-England captain shared a stand of 248 with current
skipper Root (136) on the first day of the inaugural day/night Test on English
Cook, who had already made 193 for Essex in the round of
floodlit County Championship matches in June, batted for more than six hours on Thursday and rarely looked in any trouble as he compiled his 31st Test century.
He also had the best view of anyone as the gifted Root made
his 13th hundred at this level and set a new England record of fifties in 11
"He kind of makes it look quite easy. Frustratingly
easy," Cook told reporters.
"It's incredible he manages to score like he does. If
he's not the best England player I've played with he's right up there.
"His game is phenomenal...He's just phenomenally
consistent against world-class bowlers around the world," the left-handed
The match started several hours later than would usually be
the case for a Test in England and Cook told reporters: "It was slightly
unusual because you're programmed to play in white kit starting at 12:00 with a
red ball, it's what we've done for all our careers.
"Suddenly changing it takes a little bit of time. It's
just a mental thing.
"I think if you get 150 and you're not out at the end
of day you enjoy it," he added.
Cook was not alone in having a fine time, with a typically
lively crowd cheering him on in what was the 50th Test played at Edgbaston.
Of their six major home grounds, the Birmingham venue is the
one where England have their best record with a win rate of 53 percent.
It was also where Cook made his Test-best score of 294
against India six years ago.
"The crowd enjoyed it and it was a good day for
But the 32-year-old warned against rushing to judgement.
"We won't know about the pink ball until two or three
years down the line," he said.
"I can't see it not being a success in other parts of
the world, whether we need to do it in England is a different matter.
"We have the trouble that it's not that dark until the
last hour and doesn't actually feel like a day/nighter until the last
Meanwhile cricket chiefs have been accused of discriminating
against the colour blind by deploying the pink ball.
According to the Daily Telegraph, a letter from campaign
group Colour Blind Awareness has urged the England and Wales Cricket Board to
reconsider their use of the pink ball, which it said was difficult to see for
both players and spectators with the condition.
"In the UK there are approximately three million people
with colour blindness," the Telegraph quoted the letter from CBA founder
Kathryn Albany-Ward as saying.
"So, it would be extremely difficult to argue that it
is reasonable to use a pink ball when so many people are potentially adversely
affected," the letter added.
Yorkshire and England batsman Gary Ballance, not playing at
Edgbaston, is among those who've struggled to see the pink ball because of his
colour blindness, although he recently said he was finding it easier to pick up
after the ball had been modified.
And three years ago, Australia opening batsman Chris Rogers
withdrew from a pink-ball trial match because he has the condition.
But it is understood all the England players at Edgbaston
had eyesight tests in a bid to ensure they could cope with the pink ball.