Wickham Bishops: Joy for Essex’s Alistair Cook as he captains England to Ashes series victory

England's Alistair Cook celebrates

England's Alistair Cook celebrates - Credit: PA

Alastair Cook completed a remarkable rise yesterday from playing Essex village cricket to captaining England to an Ashes series triumph.

Opening batsman Cook, 28, who used to play for Maldon Cricket Club, had celebrated leading his country to Ashes glory, by drawing the Third Test at Old Trafford to retain the urn. England were 2-0 up with just two matches to play.

But yesterday Cook became the proud captain of an England team that had won an Ashes series outright.

Australia were skittled out for 224 on the fourth day of the Fourth Test, as England completed a 74-run victory for an unassailable 3-0 lead.

Essex county star Cook, whose family live at Wickham Bishops, just outside Witham, first played senior cricket for Maldon as an 11-year-old, when turning out for their 3rd XI. He went on to play for his local club, on and off, for seven years.

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Soon after leaving school, Cook was handed his first-class debut by Essex at the end of the 2003 season. Three years later and he made his debut for England – and he has not looked back since.

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