Graham Thorpe greeted Joe Root’s ‘work ethic’ as the England captain prepared to join him in a select group of players who have played in 100 Tests for the Three Lions. Root will hit the milestone when he leads England in the first of a series of four games against India in Chennai next week. In the process, he will become just the 15th Englishman in 144 years of Test Cricket to have played in a hundred matches. Fellow batsman Thorpe is one of the previous 14, who reached the milestone in his last international appearance against Bangladesh in 2005.
Former Surrey left-handed Thorpe has just seen his playing career overlap with Root’s and is now teaming up with him in his role as England’s batting coach.
“Playing a hundred test matches is not an easy task,” Thorpe said during a conference call on Friday. His family will be very proud. He has always remained humble. He is a great student of the game.
“It’s a real achievement because of its longevity,” added Thorpe, who himself scored nearly 7,000 test runs.
“You need a good sense of humor to play that much cricket because you will experience highs, but there will be times when you have lows.
“You have to show a little character and resilience, you have to keep adapting and sometimes you have to tinker with your technique and you have to get it all done.”
Now 51-year-old Thorpe recalls his first experience seeing Yorkshire batsman Root in action, adding: “What I saw early on with Joe and I was lucky enough to see some of his early matches with Yorkshire was real character. Character and temper … He just had a great work ethic. He’s always trying to get better. “
Root headlines the campaign in India in fine form after innings of 228 and 186 in England’s 2-0 series clean sweep in Sri Lanka.
Those hundreds saw the 30-year climb to the top five of the Test batting rankings.
“He has shown that he wants to be a good example in the series in Sri Lanka,” said Thorpe van Root, who has now scored 8,249 test runs, including 19 centuries, with an impressive average of 49.39.
“The players who are with him on the team have a very good example of how he goes about his business.”
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