Alastair Cook: Not too late to drop England ODI captain - Boycott

By Jamie LillywhiteBBC Sport
England captain Alastair Cook
Cook first captained England's one-day team on the tour of Bangladesh in February 2010

Former England batsman Geoffrey Boycott says it is not too late to drop Alastair Cook as one-day captain.

England were beaten at home by Sri Lanka and India this summer, but Cook wants to lead them in the World Cup, starting in February.

Referring to the sacking of David Moyes after 10 months as Manchester United manager, Boycott told BBC Sport: "It's never too late - look what happened at Manchester United.

"If it's not working it's not working."

Cook's captaincy has come under scrutiny this year, although England overturned an early deficit to beat India 3-1 in the Test series.

Former England spinner Graeme Swann said Cook should not play one-day cricket, while ex-captain Michael Vaughan, who admitted he was wrong to call for Cook to be replaced as Test captain, said he should not lead the 50-over team.external-link

Former England limited-overs coach Ashley Giles told the BBC last week that it was too late to appoint a new captain.

Alastair Cook as England one-day captain
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Cook, 29, is 13th on the list of England's all-time ODI run-scorers, with 3,085 at an average of 37.62 and strike rate of 77.57.

"Cook can bat in one-dayers but there are better people," said Boycott.

"The modern game has changed and is so high-scoring now that maybe we need somebody who is a faster scorer up front, so if you picked your best team he might not be in it."

England lost heavily to India in three matches before winning the final game of a one-day series in which they used 15 players.

They play a seven-match series in Sri Lanka starting in November and complete their World Cup preparations with a triangular series against India and hosts Australia in January.

Boycott, 73, said: "You would think that by now we would know what we were doing, but there are a lot of things we don't know.

Alastair Cook's one-day international record
MatchesRunsAverageCenturiesStrike rate

"It's a number of things: selecting the captain, what order people are batting, the bowlers, we haven't got a left-arm spinner.

"We have such a lot of problems to solve. That doesn't mean to say they aren't solvable but what worries me is the selectors don't seem to be clear on what the team should be, yet we're six months away from the World Cup.

"It's like my football team, Manchester United - they're in disarray. It's about getting round pegs in round holes."

Boycott, who scored 22 centuries for England during an 18-year Test career, played in the inaugural one-day internationalexternal-link in 1971, a 40-over match in which England made 190 and Australia won by five wickets.

"In those days if you made 230 you won most matches," he said. "They knock them off in 30 overs now.

"If you make 270 now you're not guaranteed a win; you can make 300 and lose.

"The game has changed and you have to open your mind; you can't afford to stick in the past. I don't think we're thinking well enough forward."

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