'I'm thrilled that I actually scored 294'
More than the disappointment of missing out on a triple century by just six runs, England opener Alastair Cook is 'thrilled' at scoring 294 against India in the third Test at Edgbaston on Friday.
Riding on Cook's amazing knock, England amassed a massive 710 for seven declared in their first innings. He had resumed from his overnight score of 182 runs.
"It's taken almost 13 hours of hard work to get to that opportunity to make 300. When you don't do it, it's going to have a little of disappointment. But I'm thrilled that I actually scored 294 runs rather than the six I didn't get," said Cook, who registered his personal best in all forms of cricket on Friday.
Image: Alastair Cook acknowledges the applause from the crowd after being dismissed for 294
Photographs: Getty Images
'We're favourites, but it doesn't make you win'
England are in the driver's seat, but Cook is still not taking anything for granted.
"There's a lot of hard work to do tomorrow. But if we are patient, like we have been, and bowl like we know we can do, we'll put India under a lot of pressure.
"We're favourites, but it doesn't make you win. The wicket is still playing well; you could see that how people got in, so it can't be that bad. But if we keep doing our basics well, I'm sure we will create nine opportunities in two days."
Image: Alastair Cook
'Pitch was a little bit slower to dominate'
Both Cook and England batted rather grimly on Friday and did not score quickly. The England opener put it down to the slowness of the track.
"The old ball made it quite hard to score. There were quite defensive fields, and the pitch was a little bit slower to dominate. I don't think anyone found it easy to hit through the line.
"But there's such a long time left in the game. When you bowl a side out in two sessions, you can bat as long as you want. We knew the wicket wasn't going to get any better and we wanted to make the most of that by batting when it was at its' best," Cook said.
Image: Eoin Morgan congratulates Cook
'We've got six double-hundreds since 2010'
He reminded everyone the kind of big scores England batsmen are now regularly managing and gave the credit to the side's batting coach, his mentor Graham Gooch.
"As a side, we've got six double-hundreds since 2010 -- which is a tribute to the way we bat. He's quite happy, quite proud. But I'm sure he'll be throwing at me in the morning -- put an innings to bed and move on."
Cook, who showed admirable patience and stamina to bat for 13 hours, said he wasn't particularly tired after the effort.
"That's why you do the fitness work, to allow you to do bit, and then the mental concentration is something you pick up over time. I felt a little bit leggy, more tired last night but today I am fine."
Image: England's players celebrate an Indian dismissal