Joe Root’s rhythm back as he hits hundred for England, says Bumble
David Lloyd states England captain Joe Rot rediscovered his rhythm as he scored his 17th Test century and first since February.
On day three of the second Test against New Zealand in Hamilton having made two and 11 during the innings defeat of England in the first Test root struck an unbeaten 114 from 278 balls.
Even the 28-year-old didn’t score a hundred in the Ashes – heading out 77 in a series in – but Sky Cricket pro Lloyd thinks Root is on the way to finding his best form.
SCORECARD | AS IT HAPPENED
“England showed good discipline and it was so important that Root got straight back in the runs,” said Bumble, after the tourists – for whom Rory Burns (101) scored a second Test century – shut a rain-shortened day on 269-5 to trail the Kiwis by 106 runs with two weeks remaining.
“I believed that he dug in to all his reservations [about the evening of day two] when his movement was not wonderful. The longer he batted, his rhythm came back.
“His back position, his knock down to third man, his front leg bending into the shooter. Everything came backagain. He moved in sync. He will be thinking there are plenty more runs there.”
Bumble’s fellow Sky Cricket expert Mark Butcher also noted the way Root improved because a streak of 14 Exam innings snapped with no century as his knock progressed.
“There was a change throughout the innings,” Butcher said of Root, whose previous Test ton came against West Indies at St Lucia at February.
“In the beginning he had been over-balancing, his mind was getting away from the line of off stump and that he did not have a business foundation to push away from, get forwards from. He battled with himself.
“However, as he got , the footwork started to be better and his balance was awesome. He seemed just like the Root that had been churning out runs, dare I mention , before he became captain.”
Root and Burns shared a 177-run rack for the third wicket but Burns had been run out before teawhile Ben Stokes (26) and debutant Zak Crawley (1) nicked off following the break prior to the wet weather – that may also return on afternoon four – wiping out the Last hour at Seddon Park
Bumble states England can win the Test and draw on the series – but thinks they might have to be aggressive against New Zealand spinner Mitchell Santner.
“England have got to be thinking that there’ll be 98 overs each on days four and five,” added Lloyd.
“There’s a bit of rain about on day four, we are told, but they must have a thought of attempting to win the game. The only real way is by simply getting way and seeing what happens.
“It is odds on to become a draw can England accelerate the game? I do not think New Zealand will allow them to. I think that they could push on the ball wide and package the off-side.
“The 1 thing England could do is get after Santner. Although they were a bit passive against him tempo will be important. They have to try and receive any sort of result as Burns says the cracks in the pitch are getting wider.”
Butcher added:”England have dropped a while with rain.
“They’ve gone about 2.5 conducts an over so far. That might have been nice if they hadn’t dropped overs and been down in stumps. But they need to determine how in the world they’ll get a result of 100.
“You’re almost in a place in which you are better off getting bowled a tiny bit behind and then attempting to knock the group who can’t win the match around for 150 at the next innings.”
See day four of the second Test between New Zealand and England in 9pm, Sunday on Sky Sports Cricket.