England captain Joe Root had come under the scanner by fans as well as former cricketers like Michael Vaughan for being too conservative in his approach as far as declaring the innings was concerned on the fourth evening.
Joe Root was asked about his thought process behind delaying the declaration after his team notched up a commanding 227-run win over India at the Chepauk in Chennai.
The champion batsman revealed that the reasoning behind his tactics was that he wanted to take the chances of India’s win out of the equation. Joe Root said that he wanted to give his bowlers a fair share of recovery time so that they can operate at full throttle with the hard nut on the fifth morning.
The delayed declaration eventually did not matter in the end as James Anderson and Jack Leach ran through the Indian batting line-up on the final day. The duo claimed seven wickets between them to knock over India for 192.
“We could have declared earlier, for sure, we could have. I wanted to make sure that there were only two results possible in this game. I wanted to make sure that we turned up today with the ball still being hard. We wanted to give our bowlers an extra bit of time to be raring to go. We wanted to get to 400 and then we wanted to press the accelerator. Actually, it was going to be really important that we had runs on the board as it was a fast outfield,” Joe Root told ANI.
Joe Root also admitted that Rishabh Pant’s ability to take the game away from the opposition within the space of a session was also playing in his mind. Pant, who smashed a whirlwind 91 off 88 balls in the first innings, managed just 11 runs in the second innings thanks to James Anderson’s brilliantly disguised slower ball that lulled the southpaw into a false stroke towards the cover region.
“Rishabh Pant bats for one session and he can make things quite interesting. I did not want the pressure of having to contain and as well as take wickets. I wanted to make sure that the bowlers were concentrating on the ways of finding the wickets on that surface. We were always going to create ten chances, we just had to be disciplined and take the chances that came our way. We could have declared earlier, I am just glad how it has turned out,” Joe Root added.