England captain Root hints at changes for Pakistan Tests

Says team wants to be effective in all conditions

Reuters April 24, 2018
Challenging the squad: Root has urged England to continue seeking improvement. PHOTO: AFP

BENGALURU: England Test captain Joe Root has indicated a few changes in the Test squad for the upcoming two-match series against Pakistan.

Root has completed a little over a year in his captaincy role and following the underwhelming results over the last few months, where the Three Lions suffered a 4-0 Ashes defeat against Australia, followed by another Test series loss in New Zealand in March, the skipper is predicting significant changes to his team.

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"Looking forward, there will be changes, especially long-term and then it is up to guys to come in and take the opportunities," said Root while talking to Sky Sports Cricket. "I want us to keep searching for ways to be a really effective side in a number of different conditions."

First Test between England and Pakistan will begin from May 24 at Lord’s, whereas the final match of the series will be played from June 1 at Headingley.

‘No bitter feeling for not being picked in IPL’

Root went unsold in the Indian Premier League (IPL) players' auction in February, but the right-handed batsman does not grudge several England players who are in India to showcase their talents in the ongoing tournament.

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"It's not frustration watching the other guys,” he said. "I went into the IPL auction to get a bit more exposure to T20 cricket, it didn't materialise, it would have been nice to be involved in that but I've got no bitter feelings towards the other guys, I think it's great."

Root is instead watching his England teammates, including all-rounder Ben Stokes and wicketkeeper batsman Jos Buttler, play in the eight-team league and believes their experience would only strengthen the team.

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"They'll benefit hugely from it and we, as a side, will benefit hugely from it. Look at the way Jos and Ben and a few guys came back from it last year and what it has brought to their games..." said Root. "Hopefully that can happen on a wider scale with more and more players going out there from English cricket, playing under scrutiny and in the high-pressure situations that that tournament brings, it can only be a good thing for us in the long term."

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