Joe Root: I’m nothing without England’s great players, says modest captain

JOE ROOT became England’s most successful Test captain – overtaking Michael Vaughan – and then paid tribute to the “wonderful players” who had helped make it possible.

Sunday, 29th August 2021, 9:18 am
Updated Sunday, 29th August 2021, 9:31 pm
England's Craig Overton celebrates with England's Jonny Bairstow after taking the wicket of India's Rishabh Pant on day four at the Emerald Headingley. Picture: Nigel French/PA

Root gained his 27th win from his 55th match in charge, beating the mark of his mentor and boyhood hero, as England crushed India by an innings and 76 runs in the Headingley Test.

Root played a huge hand in the win, scoring 121, his sixth Test century of the calendar year, and his third of the series, as England drew level at 1-1 with two Tests to play.

But he deflected praise away from himself after achieving the captaincy milestone on his home ground.

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England's Joe Root (right) claps the fans after victory over India during day four at the Emerald Headingley. Picture: Nigel French/PA

“That’s obviously nice, something to be proud of, but a lot of that goes down to the players that I’ve been able to captain and the performances they’ve put in,” he said. “People like Jimmy Anderson, Stuart Broad, Alastair Cook, Ben Stokes – some of the greats of the game.

“There’s so many who, under pressure, will deliver for you time and again, and I’ve been very fortunate to work with some wonderful players and coaches as well.

“You’re the one making the decisions, but the players are the ones putting in performancs.”

Root plans to continue as captain for the foreseeable future. “As long as I’m enjoying it, as long as we feel like we’re moving in the right direction and that I’m the right man for it in my own mind, I’m more than happy to keep doing it,” he added.

England's Ollie Robinson celebrates after taking a wicket during day four at the Emerald Headingley. Picture: Nigel French/PA