England captain Alastair Cook Wednesday declared the furore over Graeme Swann's shock retirement "closed", saying the spinner had assured him that controversial remarks about player arrogance were not directed at his teammates.
Swann stunned the cricket world with his announcement Sunday that he was resigning immediately from the England team midway through the Ashes series. He stoked tensions by saying some players had "no idea how far up their own backsides they are".
There was speculation he was referring to his England colleagues, particularly outspoken batsman Kevin Pietersen. But Swann has since denied that and Cook said Wednesday he had insisted it was not the case.
"A phone call to Swanny reassured me very quickly that it wasn't at all anything about England players," Cook told reporters ahead of Thursday's Boxing Day fourth Test, where the tourists will be hoping to avert a 5-0 series whitewash.
"I haven't heard the quotes exactly -- obviously I've seen what's been written -- and whether it's come across badly, he totally 100 percent reassures me and the whole England team that it's not about us.
"So to me the matter's closed on that."