England captain and batting mainstay, Joe Root has hit a majestic form with the bat as he notched up his 5th Test double hundred – and second in last three Tests – on Saturday against India in Chennai.
Joe Root, on Friday, became the 9th player in Test cricket to reach a three-figure score in his 100th Test. On Day 2, he continued to score on his overnight score, and with a six over long-on off R Ashwin, he went past 200.
After a century-less 2020, the right-hander displayed a masterclass of batting against spin in his last three Tests. On raging turner in Galle against Sri Lanka, Joe Root played knocks of 228 and 186 and was the clear standout batsman in the series.
He then flew to India for a much bigger and tougher challenge. In Chennai, on a good batting wicket, but a high-quality bowling attack, with three senior bowlers – Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, and R Ashwin – and two talented youngsters – Shahbaz Nadeem and Washington Sundar – the English skipper proved why he is matches shoulder to shoulder with the likes of Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, and Kane Williamson.
Joe Root eventually was dismissed for 218 being the spine of England’s massive first-innings score. He was dismissed lbw by Nadeem. While he was initiating his walk towards the dressing room, the Indian captain offered him a handshake as a sign of respect to the Root’s monumental innings.
— BCCI (@BCCI) February 6, 2021
With his 218 in Chennai, Joe Root became the first-ever batsman in Test cricket to notch up a double ton while batting in his 100th Test. Also, he is now the third-highest run-scorer for England as the 30-year-old leapfrogged Alec Stewart. Only Graham Gooch and Sir Alastair Cook are ahead of him in the runs tally for England.
Joe Root’s double hundred puts England in command at stumps on Day 2
With the score of 555/8 the visitors are in a commanding position – even unbeatable now – at stumps on Day 2.
After Dom Sibley’s late wicket on Day 1, Bes Stokes, the vice-captain, joined his captain in the middle and the left-hander took the attack to the Indian bowlers. Stokes batted with alacrity, sweeping, slogging, charging down, and raced to 82 from 118 balls before being caught in the deep.
England’s 9th wicket pair of Dom Bess and Jack Leach has survived for 11 overs; India needs to bat big in their first innings to create a winning chance in the first Test match.