Despite the odds stacked against them, England skipper Joe Root has insisted that the Three Lions believed that they could win the first Test in Nottingham against India. Root also called for the team to have strong character and credited India’s seam bowling attack for putting them under pressure.
At 52/1, with 157 runs needed to win, India went into the fifth day on the back of great confidence that stemmed from the first four days of action. However, as it has been a theme in the past, rain played the spoilsport as the two teams had to settle for a draw. While India’s chances of winning were evident, England too had an opportunity to make a game out of it, owing to the conditions on offer.
In the post-match presentation, England skipper and Player of the Match, Joe Root insisted that the Three Lions believed that they could come away with a win against India in Nottingham. Not just that, Root added that the match setups the series really well and insisted that it was a shame that the encounter ended in a draw.
“The weather disrupted what would have been a very interesting final day. Great Test match to play in and watch as well. Sets up the series really well and hopefully, we can take it into the next games. We certainly believed we could win. We knew we would have opportunities if we took our catches and kept our fields. It’s a shame it ended this way,” Joe Root said in the post-match presentation.
However, ahead of the second Test at Lord’s, Root admitted that the team has to get better in ‘certain areas’ and added that there is a requirement for strong characters. Throughout the first Test, there were numerous opportunities put down by the English fielders at the slip, which took the game away from the hosts.
“There are certain areas where we want to get better in. We want to get better at the top of the order and take our catches. We need strong characters. We want to keep that enthusiasm in, it is fun scoring runs and a fun game. Really relishing the opportunities in front of us. We have to deal with the schedule changes and the setup changes.”
While he reckoned that it was a challenge for the youngsters to experience the number of games in a short space of time, he credited India for bowling their hearts out. Root hailed the Indian bowling unit as a very good seam attack and added that he attacked to put pressure back on them during the second innings.
“The experienced guys have it easier going from white ball to Test cricket, but the younger guys might not have that experience. It must be quite challenging for our youngsters, but that’s no excuse. To finally get to my century was a relief given how I played throughout the day. I think India have a very good seam attack and credit to them for the way they bowled. I just wanted to put the pressure back on them with a few shots. Certainly feel full of confidence on the back of that.”