Joe Root refused to confirm whether England will play three seamers in the day-night Test at Ahmedabad. The England skipper admitted the visitors are considering the possibility and claimed the team will take a call later on.
With the pink ball set to assist the seamers, many expect England to go into the third Test with an extra quick. Joe Root has several options to choose from, with Chris Woakes, Mark Wood, Olly Stone and Stuart Broad all in the reckoning to partner James Anderson and Jofra Archer. The duo is slated to return in the 3rd India vs England Test beginning February 24.
Joe Root was questioned on the subject when he sat down for media duties on Tuesday. While he stopped short of confirming the change, he said that all fast bowlers have a chance of making the cut.
“I think there are a few things (that England are evaluating). That’s certainly been one of them. The whole group is in and amongst things. We’ll make that decision going into tomorrow.”
Some hard yards for our quicks in Ahmedabad 🥵 pic.twitter.com/71l8ZB76j1
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) February 19, 2021
While it is unclear whether England will go start with three seamers, it is assumed that Jofra Archer will return to the playing eleven. The pacer missed the second Test due to injury but has been practising with the pink-ball in Ahmedabad. Joe Root admitted he was happy to see Jofra Archer return to the fold.
“Yeah, it would be good to get through training tonight to have absolute clarity. But it’s great to see him back bowling again. He adds to what is a very strong bowling group and he’s very much a big part of what we are about. To see him back amongst things would be very exciting and hopefully, he is fit and available for selection,” said the England skipper.
Although Joe Root didn’t confirm whether Jofra Archer will start tomorrow, he was aware of what the express pacer brings to the side.
“He is a world-class performer. He’s got all of the skills. He can bowl high pace, swing it both ways and obviously can make it talk off the seam as well,” said Root.
Welcome back, lads! 🏴🏏 pic.twitter.com/7l5rWMH6nt
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) February 17, 2021
England also have decisions to make when it comes to their batting line-up. Rory Burns and Dan Lawrence have struggled in the first two Tests. While Burns has scored 58 runs in 2 games, Lawrence has amassed only 53.
With Jonny Bairstow back in the squad and Zak Crawley fit again, England have the option of going with a new-look top three against India. Joe Root relished the selection headaches in front of him, conceding the first two Tests have been difficult for players who have not played in India before.
“I think it’s a great headache to have these two guys (Jonny Bairstow and Zak Crawley) back in the fold and available for selection. It’s been a tricky tour for our batters. Very alien conditions and there has been a lot of learning going on. The guys have responded well to that. They’re trying to keep improving,” the England captain concluded.