Joe Root has decided to quit as captain of the England Test team. He took this decision today. He was under pressure amidst his team’s below-par performance in the Ashes series and above-par going down in the Test series against the West Indies recently. Sir Alastair Cook passed the captaincy baton to Root in 2017.
Root’s five-year tenure as a captain was replete with ups and downs. As a captain, he lost the series against India in his own backyard last year. After that, Australia thrashed the three lions miserable by 4-0 and went down to the West Indies by 1-0, further rubbing salt on his wound.
Under Root’s captaincy, England won 27 Tests more than his compatriots Sir Alastair Cook and Sir Andrew Strauss (24 each). But he also suffered a huge number of defeats, 26.
The replacement of Root has not been announced yet by the England Cricket Board (ECB). It is expected that Ben Stokes will take over as England’s new Test captain.
Poor performance in Test cricket
The shabby performance of the side has been continuing for the last few years in the longest format of the game. The team emerged victorious in one of the Tests in their last 17 outings. It is the worst possible record by any standard.
Earlier, an axe fell on several members of the management and support staff, including former England team director Ashley Giles and head coach Chris Silverwood, owing to the team’s abysmal performance in white dress.
However, various cricketers of yesteryear backed Root to continue as captain, saying he was the right man for the high-pressure role.
Best time to quit: Root
After returning from the Caribbean tour and having time to reflect, I have decided to step down as England’s men’s Test captain. It has been the most challenging decision I have had to make in my career, but having discussed this with my family and those closest to me, I know the timing is right, “Root said in a statement from the ECB.
Root’s strategy as captain was the talking point over the past 12 months. No one raised any questions about his own batting. As a leader of the team, he failed to marshall his troops in an adequate manner. His batting record is remarkable during his time as a captain, having scored 5295 runs in 64 Tests at an average of 46.44, including 14 hundreds and 26 fifties.
Tom Harrison, ECB chief executive, lauded Root for leading the side during trying times and highlighted the respect that the star batter earned from his teammates.
The 31-year-old Joe Root is a fabulous batsman, and he must share his captaincy experience with his successor. England doesn’t look like a solid side in Test cricket. The team lacks quality players. The bowling and batting units lack the spark to trouble opponents. The next captain of the team may change the fortunes of the English team in the oldest form of cricket.