A team man through and through, Joe Root whilst understanding the captain’s decision to leave him out of the third T20I has admitted that lack of opportunities to play T20 cricket has been difficult. However, a confident Root also claimed that he has already proved his T20 credentials in the past.
After two ordinary performances with the bat in the first and second T20Is against India, Joe Root was dropped from the third T20I with all-rounder Ben Stokes getting the nod ahead of him. England performed well with the bat in the first innings only to be stumped by a spectacular Rohit Sharma ton in the second, with India managing to chase 199 quite comfortably.
The last time Root was dropped was back in 2013 on England’s disastrous tour of Australia, where he missed one match and was recalled on the tour to the Caribbean. Post that period, Root’s career graph has only shown a positive trend, as he currently holds a spot in the top 10 rankings of both ODI and Tests and replaced Cook as the Test Captain. Speaking in press conferences, Root is always full of praise for the team and never hesitated in saying that he just wanted the team to do well.
"I want to see us be as complete a side as possible in all three formats. One thing that is for sure, it's great to see Stokesy [his replacement in Bristol] back playing. He's such a big asset to all three teams and long-term for England, that's a really important thing." Root said, reported Cricbuzz.
While England might have lost the T20I series, as an ODI side they are a different beast. The Three Lions recently whitewashed an underwhelming Australian side and created a new record for the most number of runs scored in a single innings of an ODI. Root also said that England’s outstanding performance against Australia were perfect but issued a rallying cry ahead of the three-match series against the Indians.
"This is another opportunity for us to try and replicate some of those performances (against Australia) and another opportunity for me to make some big runs. I'm hungry to do so. I've been quite quiet this summer so far. I feel like I've got the bit between my teeth right now," he added.
“You’ve got to always stay true to yourself. There's an element of trying to expand your game and develop certain areas but you have to play (according to) the situation in front of you. Over the last couple of years, I've been fairly consistent because I've tried to play in that manner and tried to play a role for this team which benefits the group.”
Currently, he knows his priorities - World Cup 2019 and Test Cricket Captaincy - and said that he will try to play in the Big Bash and other domestic leagues only if England’s schedule permits him. For now, he is concentrating on the three match ODI series against World No. 2 India. “We’ve played some really strong cricket in the one-day format for a while now and India are right up there as one of the best sides in the world. They will bring different challenges to what we’ve recently faced but we know if we play to our potential, we will be a very difficult side to beat, especially at home”, concluded Root.