England captain, Alastair Cook, admits reaching a century of Test caps will be “a huge honour”, although that feat will mean little if his team fail to win.
The opener has represented his country 97 times since making his Test debut against India as a 21-year-old in 2006. He made an immediate impact, scoring 60 and 104, and he has never looked back.
Now 28, Cook has scored 7,801 runs at an average of 47.85, including 25 centuries, an England record.
The Essex batsman is on course to break another record, the one Alec Stewart holds, for most Test appearances. Barring a career-ending injury or a catastrophic loss of form, fans who know how to bet on cricket can expect Cook to sail past Stewart’s 133 caps.
His 100th Test match is set to be the third of the upcoming Ashes series. While acknowledging the individual achievement, Cook’s number one priority is to head back from Australia with the urn.
“I realised it was going to be at Perth but I had not thought too much about it,” he told ecb.co.uk.
“Obviously it would be a huge honour as not many guys have done it. If I do stay fit and do it, it would be a nice club to join.
“Hopefully it will not be overshadowed by the result. At the end of the day, it’s all about the result and how many runs I score rather than the amount of caps.”
England head Down Under this week searching for a fourth successive Ashes series victory. They beat Australia 3-1 in the 2010-11 series, a victory which owed much to Cook’s runs.
The latest cricket betting odds suggest that, if the England skipper scores another 766 runs, the Three Lions will surely retain the Ashes.
A repeat of Cook’s struggles in the most recent series on home soil, and Australia could well be the team celebrating at the SCG in January; the soon-to-be centurion is that important to England.