Joe Root was in a pensive mood after England’s 317 run loss to India. The England skipper admitted his side could have performed better in Chennai and appealed to his players to learn from their mistakes.
After the highs of the 1st Test, England came crashing down in Chennai. The visitors struggled to impose themselves as India dominated the 2nd Test from start to finish. Joe Root’s men failed to adapt to the turning track and were comprehensively beaten by India.
Speaking to the media in the post-match press conference, Joe Root admitted he wants his bowlers to build more pressure on the Indian batsmen in the coming games.
“ I think as a bowling group we have spoken a lot recently about building pressure for long periods. One thing we could have gotten a little bit better especially on day 1 was squeezing the game for longer. Trying to bowl 6 balls at one batter. Try and make it difficult to rotate the strike and create pressure that way,” said the England captain.
💯 for @ImRo45 💥
Fifties for @ajinkyarahane88, @RishabhPant17 & @imVkohli 👍
Fifer on debut for @akshar2026 👌
💯 & 8⃣ wickets in the match for @ashwinravi99 👏#TeamIndia beat England by 317 runs to win the 2nd @Paytm #INDvENG Test.
— BCCI (@BCCI) February 16, 2021
England’s bowlers failed to make the most of the turning conditions in Chennai. Although Moeen Ali and Jack Leach picked 8 and 6 wickets respectively, they couldn’t keep the run-scoring in check. Stuart Broad, England’s senior-most bowler, went wicketless, while Olly Stone couldn’t do much once the ball became soft and old.
The Indian bowlers, in contrast, were a joy to watch. Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel were a menace, using the conditions to full effect. Even the pacers chipped in at crucial intervals, as Virat Kohli’s men pegged England back in the 2nd Test. Joe Root conceded Indian bowlers were better at building and sustaining the pressure.
“I think that’s something we need to do for the rest of the tour. Can we find ways of keeping the board quiet for longer? Can we string maidens together? Can we force errors through very disciplined passages of play with the ball? That’s one thing they (India) did a lot better than us,” said Joe Root.
England appeared to have no idea how to bat on the turning Chepauk surface. The hosts scored 134 and 164 in the 2nd Test, which when put together was less than India’s first innings total of 329. In a match where none of the English batsmen registered a 50 but saw two Indian players notch up tons, Joe Root wants his players to learn from their counterparts.
“One thing our batters need to learn is how well they managed to rotate the strike. How they managed to bat at the other end on a very challenging surface,” he said.
We have named our squad for the third Test against India 👇#INDvENG
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) February 16, 2021
Despite admitting that England were outplayed, Joe Root took heart from the fact that the series is still level. The skipper took responsibility after the heavy defeat and claimed he was looking forward to the pink-ball Test which begins on February 24 in Ahmedabad.
“My job is to manage the squad of players that are here, and I’m doing that to the best of my ability. I think we got some wonderfully talented players and a squad of players that is capable of winning out here. We’re 1-1 in it. Two games in a new stadium and a pink-ball. Very much looking forward to getting stuck into it,” signed off Joe Root.