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Pitch looks the same but we learn our lessons: Root

Source: PTI
Last updated on: March 03, 2021 20:30 IST
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'I think that as batters if you don't score runs, you will always look at yourselves, you'll always try and find ways to improve and we've certainly done that.'

Joe Root bats in the nets in Ahmedabad on Wednesday

IMAGE: Joe Root bats in the nets in Ahmedabad on Wednesday. Photograph: England Cricket/Twitter

England skipper Joe Root on Wednesday said the pitch for the fourth and final Test against India looks very similar to the one on which his team was decimated in the third game but the visitors have learnt their lessons to be ready for the challenge starting Thursday.

 

India need to either draw or win the match to find a place in the World Test Championships final in June, while a win for England would revive some of the lost confidence after the thrashing inside two days in the third Test.

"It's (the pitch) looking very similar...I think the most important thing is that we learn all the lessons from the last two Test matches and make sure we're back for it," Root said when asked about the raging debate over the pitch in the last Test and how this one was looking.

"It's important that if we get ourselves in a similar position in the first innings, we really make that count. And try and get some scoreboard pressure in the game, you know, early on," he said at the virtual press conference, on the eve of the game in Ahmedabad.

"I think that as batters if you don't score runs, you will always look at yourselves, you'll always try and find ways to improve and we've certainly done that.

"We've looked at a couple of dismissals and how we're going to find ways of building big partnerships and getting some significant scores on it if it is a similar surface this time around," he added.

He also informed that the team has not finalised its 11 or 12 at this stage but made it clear that off-spinner Dom Bess was up for selection.

"No, not at this stage and we're gonna have another day to see what that wicket finally looks like, ahead of things and we'll get a team at the toss," the England skipper informed.

"He (Dom Bess) is certainly up for selection. He has been training really well. He's got a very good character and if he gets a chance to play, I'm sure he'll be desperate to try and exploit the surface if it's anything like the last two games," he added.

Root said that his side did not underestimate Axar Patel and it has been just a case of the left-arm spinner being good and exploiting the conditions at the Narendra Modi Stadium really well.

"I definitely do not think that we underestimated Axar Patel. I think he has exploited the surfaces really well; he has managed to beat both edges of the bat. For any spinner, it is exactly what you are trying to do, every spinner is trying to keep all the modes of dismissals in play. I think he has done that very well. We have to make sure that we are covering our stumps and one goes past the outside edge, we just have to accept that," said Root while replying to an ANI query during a virtual press conference on Wednesday.

"We have got to put pressure back on the bowler, if we do get balls to score off, we have to make sure that we put them away. Similarly, if we get the opportunity to get off strike, we have to do that. It is trusting the basics of the game and it is the most important thing for a team. We have that confidence in our team," he added.

Root also revealed that an illness hit the touring party earlier this week but all members of the squad trained ahead of the fourth Test and are available for selection.

The English captain did not specify the nature of the illness but said he has a full squad to choose from.

"...the guys are fit and available for the game tomorrow. That gives us a little more time to name the squad," Root said.

"So, everyone in that way is as prepared how they would have liked it for the Test match," he added.

Root said assistant coach Paul Collingwood was one of two members worse affected by the sickness.

India lead the four-match series 2-1 with the final Test slated to begin here at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Thursday.

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