Cape Town - It won't be enough to save the Ashes, but Alastair Cook's masterful 244* in the fourth Test against Australia will go down as one of the greatest moments of his career.
It was a knock that left England at 491/9 at the end of day three, 164 runs ahead of Australia and looking good for a victory.
In the process, Cook moved ahead of Brian Lara and Mahela Jayawardene to become the sixth highest run-getter in Test cricket with 11 956.
The former England skipper has been struggling with his form all series and had carded scores of 2, 7, 37, 16, 7 and 14 in the three Tests before this.
That run had prompted calls for him to lose his place in the side at the completion of the Ashes, but after this it doesn't look like Cook is going anywhere any time soon.
Cook's marathon knock drew a big response from social media, with a number of his former team-mates and even his critics congratulating him on his efforts.
Yes Cooky!!!! Form is temporary, Class is permanent!! Mentally one of the toughest players to ever play the game and England’s greatest ever run scorer, well played Alastair Cook!! ??????#Ashes #Legend— James Taylor (@jamestaylor20) December 27, 2017
‘It’s never going to be pretty, my batting.’ - Alastair Cook.— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) December 28, 2017
No, it’s not.
But when he bats like he did today, Cook’s a magnificent Test match player & clearly still has the hunger for big runs.
The fact he never sweats is still bloody weird, though. @btsportcricket pic.twitter.com/G9l8pvTQpq
Cook - ‘daddy’ ?? #legend— Matt Prior (@MattPrior13) December 28, 2017
People on here sayings it’s easy to perform when the #Ashes have been lost and in a dead rubber clearly have no idea how hard it is to score Test 100s ... The Ashes have gone but the England team have shown lots of pride this week which is what all involved wanted to see.. #OnOn— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) December 28, 2017
Your my favourite player Alastair Cook ????— Ben Stokes (@benstokes38) December 28, 2017
A hundred congratulations to Alastair Cook for a great century… still some fire glowing in the ashes— Stephen Fry (@stephenfry) December 27, 2017
Well played ! Best I’ve ever seen you bat & what a treat it was to watch too at the mighty MCG !… https://t.co/Qk9iGRqnUQ— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) December 28, 2017