Trott: Captaincy and decision making are natural to Root

Having made his Test debut during the tour of India in 2012, Joe Root has had a successful career so far, amassing 8249 runs in the longer format.

The first match against India in Chennai will be Joe Root's 100th Test for England.   -  GETTY IMAGES

It will be the 100th Test for Joe Root when England takes on India in the first Test in Chennai on Friday. Having made his Test debut during the tour of India in 2012, Root has had a successful career so far, amassing 8249 runs in the longer format.

And as the England captain gears up for a personal milestone, the team’s batting consultant Jonathan Trott believes that the passion for the game and the desire to improve has helped Root come so far in his international career. “He still has passion for the game and the desire to improve and that rubs off on everyone. England is very lucky to have a player like him, who is leading as captain and also be able to bat in the middle order,” Trott said in a media interaction on Wednesday.

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Trott was one of the senior players of the side during Root’s debut series in 2012 and having seen him come a long way, Trott believes that the captain has impressed everyone with his meteoric rise. “I would say I was surprised a bit. I think in that tour he came in a warm-up game and impressed everybody not only by his skill but by the way he conducted himself. For somebody who hasn't played international cricket and was new to the side it was a big thing," Trott said.

Jonathan Trott, England's batting consultant.   -  Photo: ECB

 

While England suffered a 0-4 defeat in the five-match Test series in 2016, the team looks confident this time, under Root’s leadership. “Captaining in India is a skill in itself like rotating bowlers and spinners and he has done that really well. We saw that in Sri Lanka and I think it goes hand in hand as it seems very natural to him the captaincy and the decision making,” Trott said.

“It can be a real challenge for anybody but for Joe, I have full confidence in his ability in leading the boys. I know he is very excited about the series,” the batting consultant added.

 

The Test series will also mark the return of international cricket in India post the COVID-19 pandemic, and Trott believes that in the Indian conditions, it is important for the touring side to pile on big runs in the first innings.

Asked whether he has advised anything specific to the team, Trott said: “That varies from player to player. For some, it will be their first tour of India, while some have already been here a few times. There are different things, different messages and it’s about building relationships with players that haven’t previously worked with us as much as others. So, the message varies from player to player, but the fundamentals of playing in India remains the same.” “Big runs early on - in the first innings - it’s very important in India and playing spin and having your method and being able to execute that under pressure is the most important thing,” Trott said.

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Until a few years ago, spinners played a key role in Indian conditions. But now, with India producing a strong pool of fast bowlers, Trott agrees that it will be a challenge.

“Their pace attack did really well in Australia and they are very talented all-round with the ball and so for batters, yeah, (it will be) more so (challenging). As you go around the world nowadays, everyone’s got a good pace attack, so it’s crucial to prepare for both. Your skill level has to be very high and playing under the heat, humidity in Chennai, you need to be strong,” Trott said.

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