Cricket: Brian Lara and Brett Lee back England skipper Alastair Cook
Last Updated: 04/07/14 6:35pm
Two cricketing heavyweights, Brian Lara and Brett Lee, have given Alastair Cook their backing as England's captain.
Sky Sports commentator Shane Warne has been critical of Cook's captaincy - which provoked the England skipper to hit back at the Australian spin king - but Warne's former Aussie team-mate Lee thinks Cook is the man to lead his country.
Lee told Sky Sports News: "I actually think he's a natural leader and I think it brings out the best of him with his batting. You've got to look back to some other captains who have struggled with their batting.
"It's not that often where you see a batsman score runs and be a geat captain at the same time; we've seen it with Mark Taylor, we've seen it with Allan Border, Steve Waugh, Mike Atherton whoever it might be.
"It's hard to score runs and be known as a great captain at the same time. I'm sure when he gets back out there and really focuses on scoring runs, the rest will take care of itself."
Lara is also confident that Cook - who became the youngest player to score 8,000 Test runs last winter - will soon rediscover his form and cement his hold on the captaincy of the England Test team.
"Alastair Cook has got to buckle down," Lara said. "It's not always easy as a captain if you have not got older heads in the team to call on but he's got the opportinity with a younger group to see if he can mould them in the way that he wants to.
"People are very vicious at times if you get one or two bad results; the media are on top of you so I expect him to come into his own soon. He's bright guy."
Don't miss a ball of the bicentenary celebrations at Lord's on Saturday as the Rest of the World take on the MCC. Live coverage begins at 10am on Sky Sports 1.