By Amlan Chakraborty
NEW DELHI, February 4 (Reuters) – Joe Root will enter his 100th test on Friday determined not to let his individual battles distract him from his broader goal of capturing England to a series victory in India, the player said. 30 years. Thursday.
One of the subplots of the four-test series will be a batting one-on-one between the top two batsmen in contemporary cricket at Root and his Indian counterpart, Virat Kohli.
Australia’s Steve Smith and New Zealand captain Kane Williamson round out cricket‘s ‘Big Four’, but Root says his effort has always been to learn from the line, not just compete with it.
“It’s silly not looking at how they do things … how they run their own games and keep evolving and improving all the time and then trying to add that to my own game.” Root said on a video conference.
“In terms of those one-on-one battles, for me that’s not the most important thing. It’s not something I’m going to watch, what I’ll be looking for is always trying to win this series.”
Root has been in glittering stick ever since, having scored a double century and a century in his last two tests in Sri Lanka.
Root is also England’s best batsman against spin bowling and his Ravichandran Ashwin duel will be another focal point of the series.
“He’s a great bowler, he has a great record in India and he’s probably full of confidence,” Root said of the spinner.
“I’ve played against him before, scored a few points, and he probably got the better of me a few times. It’s going to be a great little battle in the test match.”
Former England opener Geoffrey Boycott said Root could continue playing 200 tests and eclipse Sachin Tendulkar’s record of 15,921 runs in the format.
Root, who amassed 8,249 tries with an average of over 49, said he wasn’t looking that far.
“It took a long time to play those 100 test games … and it will take a long time to start over,” he said.
“To get close to him I have to play a lot more test cricket and now I just have to focus on trying to be the best I can.”
England’s preparation suffered a shake after top-notch batsman Zak Crawley was excluded from the first two tests with a wrist injury after slipping on the dressing room floor.