sport

Prior: Cook the right man

Matt Prior insists Alistair Cook is the right man to lead England despite their poor run of form.

Cook's leadership has been under scrutiny since the 5-0 Ashes whitewash and losing the recent Test series with Sri Lanka has led to questions over his future.

However, England and Sussex wicketkeeper Prior says Cook has the full support of his international team-mates.

\"We back Cookie all the way, he's a fantastic leader in the dressing room and he's a fantastic bloke,\" Prior told Sky Sports News.

\"I think that what he said yesterday was absolutely right, he's a very proud man and he is very committed to doing the job and captaining England for as long as he's asked to.

\"He's not going to give up and nor should he.

\"One of Cookie's big things is that he wants to be proud and he wants to be proud of the England cricket team and that also falls on to the player's shoulders as well.

\"The other senior players to help lead the group and to play a type of cricket that England supporters and fans can be proud of but ultimately winning games of cricket as well.

\"Certainly, we've got to support Cookie and back him up and that starts on the pitch.\"

England lost a dramatic third Test on Tuesday when James Anderson was out to the penultimate ball - meaning his and centurion Moeen Ali's last-wicket stand was in vain as the tourists sealed a 100-run win and an historic 1-0 series triumph.

\"He was pretty distraught, Jimmy played a wonderful role there to get us so close and to not be able to take that final step to get over the line was very disappointing," Prior added.

\"I think what it showed was the passion and commitment we have in the dressing room, every player playing for England knows the honour and the responsibility you have with an England shirt on and we definitely take that on and I think that's what Jimmy showed yesterday with his passion and commitment in playing for England.

\"On Moeen Ali, I thought it was a phenomenal innings. For a guy to be playing in his second Test match to play an innings like that - it's the kind of knock that you would expect from somebody who has played 100 Test matches and it just bodes really well for the future.\"