Presenting his once opening partner with the final cap playing for England at The Oval, former England Captain Andrew Strauss hailed Alastair Cook as "England's greatest player ever" before the start of Day 1.
Cook, having announced his retirement from the game, received a well-deserved guard of honour from the Indian team as he came out to bat in the first innings. Cook added 71 fluent and yet, usually dogged runs to his tally of 12,254 runs at 44.88 across 160 Tests for England.
Strauss, who is now the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) Director, talked to the England team before handing Cook the cap no. 161 to mark his final international game in what has been a long illustrious 12-year career.
"That average, that consistency, the number of times he's passed fifty and obviously the hundreds and the match-winning hundreds he's got, all combine to make him England's greatest player ever in my opinion." Strauss was quoted telling on Sky Sports.
Even the Indian Captain Virat Kohli paid a fitting tribute to one of England's best ever, at the toss and said, "We have seen too much of him sometimes."
"He has been a great player for England. What he has done as an opener has been outstanding and he will go down as one of the greatest openers to have played the game."
(Inputs from AFP)