Alastair Cook scored a brilliant Test century to become the fifth player and first Englishman to score a hundred in both their first and last Tests at the Oval on Monday. The former England captain, who departed for 147, is England’s all-time leading Test run-scorer. Cook reached his century when an overthrow from Jasprit Bumrah that went to the boundary gave him a five after he had already completed a single on the fourth day of the fifth and final Test. Together with Joe Root, his successor as England captain, Cook shared a third wicket stand of 259.
But a ball after Root was dismissed for 125, Cook was caught behind off spinner Hanuma Vihari to leave England in a strong position.
The 33-year-old Cook batted for nearly six-and-a-half hours, facing 286 balls and hitting 14 fours.
The Essex left-haned opener, who is retiring from international cricket after his match, was the first batsman since India’s Mohammad Azharuddin in 2000 to score hundreds in both their first and last Test matches.
List all the batsmen who have scored hundred in their first and last Tests:
Reggie Duff (Australia)
Test debut: Australia vs England, Melbourne (1902): 32 and 104
Last Test: England vs Australia, The Oval (1905): 146 and Did not bat (DNB)
Bill Ponsford (Australia)
Test debut: Australia vs England, Sydney (1924): 110 and 27
Last Test: England vs Australia, The Oval (1934): 266 and 22
Greg Chappell (Australia)
Test debut: Australia vs England, Perth (1970): 108 and DNB
Last Test: Australia vs Pakistan, Sydney 1984: 182 and DNB
Mohammad Azharuddin (India)
Test debut: India vs England, Kolkata (1984/85): 110 and DNB
Last Test: India vs South Africa, Bangalore (2000): 9 and 102
Alastair Cook (England)
Test debut: India vs England, Nagpur (2006): 60 and 104 not out
Last Test: England vs India, The Oval (2018): 71 and 147
(With AFP inputs)