No second thoughts, says Alastair Cook, as he faces final curtain

Alastair Cook has insisted that there will be no doubts or dramatic retreats after his decision to retire.

Cook may be only 33 years old and is committed to continuing his career in Essex, where he today confirmed a three-year extension contract, but he maintains that, no matter what happens in the future, he will not be persuaded to return to the Test cricket .

He was asked how he would respond if, during the ashes next summer, England desperately needed a first game and had been scoring strongly in the Essex County Championship, Cook was adamant that he would stick to his decision.

"No, I'm retiring and that's it," he said. "It's final, I've fulfilled my part."

Cook had previously admitted that he "briefly" went through his mind to ask for a winter in an effort to rediscover "that advantage" that he felt his game had lost. But, after reflecting on the idea, he concluded that "he has left" forever, although he accepted that there may be a period of "mourning" for his lost career in the coming months.

"If I had six months and then returned, I do not think that advantage is there," he said. "It's gone a bit, when you know [it’s time to retire, you know].

" There's going to be a transition, a period, of course there is. There will be times when you will have that duel and things like that, and that transition will take place and you will accept it, either today or two years from now.

"I think I have the opportunity to play for Essex in the coming years, it will help a lot, I will always have the luxury of knowing that the farm [family] is there too, and that takes away the pressure".

Although he admitted that there were aspects of the game he would miss, he described himself as "satisfied with what he had achieved".

"I'm going to miss the buzz," he said. "When there's a tight game, like when Edgbaston rocks, I'll sit there with jealousy watching other people play for England."

"But I'm very happy with what I've achieved. When you look at where I'll end up in terms of runs scored, it would be very arrogant to say that I expected to get there. It has gone better than I could have imagined. That is why I can safely say that I retire sadly in a way, but also very happy with what I have achieved. It makes it so much easier. "

The imminent arrival of Cook's third child, which will take place early next week, could cause him a potential clash of priorities as he prepares for his 161st and final appearance. However, he joked that his wife Alice prepared for labor only at 9 am Friday morning.

"I might have to do it alone, I think," Cook said with a smile. "We talked about that. If it arrives, I will meet later.

"Ideally, I would come after the game or, even better, after I scored a hundred, and then I would come when India is about to fight and I would not have to appear, that would be ideal, then I could go back and have another He beats in the second possibility, but I doubt that will happen "


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