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Ashes 2021: Have to do things differently: Joe Root on Batting 1st and Leaving Anderson and Broad

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England went into the 1st test match with some brave decisions like leaving out Anderson and Broad who share more than 1100 wickets between them. The decision to bat first came under scrutiny as England were all out for only 147 runs, a score that never really allowed them to get back into the match. While many ex-cricketers were baffled with England’s decision regarding batting first and team selection, Joe Root said that it was the right call.

Speaking in the post-match press conference, Joe Root, said, “If we go about things exactly how it did in the last two tours, we are going to get the same results. We have to be brave, we have to look to do things differently to previous tours. I think it was right decision (to bat first). We just didn’t play well enough in the 1st innings and if we had some sort of score on that board, we saw how the wicket started to behave today, we would have been looking at a really different contest”

Joe root on Team Selection

It was evident from the game that the Australian batters targetted Jack Leach. The spinner was the most expensive by far of other English bowlers, conceding 102 runs in just 13 overs at an economy of 7.84. Root said that the team wanted variety in their attack and different ways of changing the pace of innings. He credited Australia with the way they bowled and grabbed all their chances, unlike England who gave multiple lifelines to David Warner with drop catch and no-balls.

It was a huge risk to play Jimmy Anderson considering his position coming into the game: Joe Root

One of the reporters asked Root about the decision to leave both Anderson and Broad for the 1st time in 5 years to which Root replied that it was risky to play the pace bowler into the test match considering his situation coming into the game. Root in his own words, “I think more than anything, if you look at Jimmy’s position coming into the game, it was a huge risk to play. We saw in the previous Ashes series when we went when he (Anderson) moves 50 -50 and not quite 100 percent, the impact that it had on the rest of the series (2019 Ashes).

In the 2019 Ashes, Anderson bowled only four overs in the first test and missed the rest of the series due to recurrence of a Calf Injury. England though managed to draw the series, they badly missed their premier bowler. Root, pointed out in the post-match press conference that they are wanting to play Anderson in most of the matches in Ashes 2021 which is why they didn’t play Anderson in the 1st match to prevent a possible injury.

The second test of the Ashes 2021 will be played in Adelaide from the 16th of December. England is expected to play both James Anderson and Stuart Broad. It would be a day-night match with a Pink ball.

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