Whenever the name of England cricketer Joe Root comes up, one automatically imagines him in the white jersey, that too as a purist of the game. However, since the arrival of Brendon McCullum as head coach and the promotion of Ben Stokes as skipper, Root’s game as a batter has undergone a dramatic shift. While the entire England batting unit has opted for a more attractive approach towards the game, the energy has also infected Root who has been seen as a ‘traditional batter’ for the most part of his career so far.
In the first Test of the 2-match series against New Zealand, Root executed a “reverse scoop” shot, leaving the cricketing world bewildered. Here’s the video
Joe Root you cannot do that 👀— Cricket on BT Sport (@btsportcricket) February 16, 2023
This is world class from the former England captain 🌏#NZvENG pic.twitter.com/2tyQJK60SO
It was just the second ball after the Tea break, with Neil Wagner bowling to Root that the England veteran hit a boundary, perfectly executing the ‘reverse scoop’.
Lightning doesn't strike twice for Joe Root 😔— Cricket on BT Sport (@btsportcricket) February 16, 2023
And just like that England are 154/4… #NZvENG pic.twitter.com/uQ1gA6tcet
Only a few overs later, Root tried to hit Wagner with a similar shot, but this time, the Kiwi pacer got the better of him, with the ball falling in the hands of a fielder in slips.
As for the match, England rode on two terrific knocks from Ben Duckett (84 off 68) and Harry Brook (89 off 81) as the tourists posted a total of 325/9 before declaring the innings. The decision to declare with just one wicket remaining left a section of fans baffled but with the decision, Stokes seems to be keen on bowling under the lights for an hour to Kiwi batters. Whether the decision would result in anything fruitful or not, will become clear by stumps.
Wagner was the pick of the bowlers for the Kiwis, bagging 4 wickets for 82 runs while the likes of Tim Southee (2), Blair Tickner (1), and Scott Kuggelijn (2) were also among the wickets.