Joe Root can score heavily during The Ashes 2015 even if his England team are on the losing side
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Root will bat number five for England during the Ashes and is one of the few players in the team enjoying terrific form, with the 24-year-old now banker material for his country.
Root’s performances in the recent ODI Series against New Zealand demonstrated his capabilities with the willow, although scoring fast runs is just one element to his game, as the Australians found out two years ago.
The Yorkshireman reeled off 68 off 46 balls in the recent Twenty20 match to confirm his credentials and he will be the most confident England batsman by far heading into this five-Test series.
The fact that Root has remained at number five is also significant as he will be facing a softer ball than his team-mates higher up the pecking order. Adam Lyth and Alastair Cook will open the batting, with Gary Ballance in at number three and then Ian Bell at four.
Bell and Ballance are both struggling coming into The Ashes, with the bookies’ odds suggesting that Cook is the biggest danger to Root in this particular market and the England captain is priced at 7/2 with Betfred.
Former England captain Mike Brearley has backed Root to eventually replace Cook as the skipper, although he told the BBC that he would like to see the former keep scoring runs at a rate of knots.
“I think he’d manage it, but I think he might be helped if it doesn’t come too soon,” Brearley said. “Let him get a few more thousand runs in a very few years for England at number five or possibly number four.
“If you were going to do it, it would have to be on the basis that, if it failed, don’t keep him on too long – get him back to being what he’s best at. But he’s lively. I think he’d do a good job.”
For now, Root is simply focused on coming in to bat when England need him most and when he scores a ton for his country, it is often a big one.
He was named England’s player of the year by cricketing journalists recently and all evidence points towards him being top of that run-scoring chart come the end of the fifth series.