Back in 2006, England coach at the time Duncan Fletcher asked me if we should select the 21 year old, Alistair Cook to open the batting in the first Test Match. I had worked with Cooky with England U15s and despite not being able to hit the ball particularly hard in those days, myself and another coach at the time pushed for his selection amongst physically stronger players who could beat the field with power.
The 15 year old Cook had something that was different. As coaches, we wanted to give that talent the opportunity as it may grow into something special. So, My response to Fletcher in 2006 went a little bit like this,