Sharjah - England skipper Alastair Cook on
Saturday said his spat with famous rival Shane Warne had been blown out of
context as he insisted he now has a better relationship with the Aussie great.
Warne irked Cook with critical comments
about his captaincy last year in a newspaper column when he suggested the
Englishman should step down from his role.
Visibly upset at the comments, Cook hit
back, saying: "Well something needs to be done because for the three years
I've been England captain I have in my eyes been criticised for a hell of a lot
But a courtesy visit by Warne to help
England spinner Adil Rashid in the nets in Sharjah on Friday ahead of the
decisive third Test against Pakistan seemed to have eased out the tension.
"He was still fairly critical in the
summer as well, as (former Australian captain) Michael Clarke's best mate he
was always going to do that," said Cook of Warne's comments during
England's 3-2 Ashes win this year.
"Me and Warne's so-called spat, what I
said was taken a little bit out of context -- it was probably directed to the
whole media, not just him, and people jumped on that."
Cook said he talked to Warne on the phone
last year, which helped ease the tension.
"We had a phone call for an hour, hour
and a half, and have stayed in contact ever since. We have a better
relationship than before the phone call and it was great of him to come
down," said Cook.
"It was great of him to come down and
spend some time with Rash."
Cook believes Warne's advice will help
Rashid, who made his debut in the drawn first Test against Pakistan in Abu
"For a young leg-spinner to spend time
with the greatest ever and have access to him, and for him to be so open with
Adil, was brilliant," said Cook of the meeting.
"Me listening to what he was telling
Rash was fantastic and we are very grateful to him. I'm sure the Pakistanis
were as well with Yasir, so he's just evening himself out," said Cook.
Rashid will be key to England's plans as
they seek to level the series in the third and final Test starting on Sunday.
Pakistan won the second Test in Dubai to
take a 1-0 lead.
"Hopefully Rash took something from it
-- I'm sure he did -- and can continue on his improvement as a young
leg-spinner in terms of experience at international level," added Cook.
Cook also insisted that he has learnt with
each game as captain, something which Warne had also conceded.
"Absolutely, I've learnt. No doubt.
The more you do the job the better you get at it. You can better cope with
everything that goes with it."