Opinion: Root finds a place in England's ODI machine at last

Fielder throws cricket ball in

It appears as though Joe Root has finally found his place in England's ODI machine. Jonhenry Wilson takes a closer look:

It seems thoroughly ridiculous to even suggest that a man who has scored 4800 runs in 116 matches at an average 51.61 has only just found his place in his country's ODI team.
 
However, England's style of play in limited-overs cricket has become a dynamic and rapidly evolving one, which has put pressure on every member of the group to find a place or be left out.

Root found himself axed from England's T20I team earlier this season, because of his inability to adapt to the floating role assigned to him by the team's leadership. The message sent was a clear one - reputation, talent and history can only take you so far. Being a good player isn't enough, in order to maintain a place in the ODI side every man must have a role to perform.
 
One of the few criticisms that could be levelled at the number one-ranked ODI side in the world is that they have struggled to adjust to low-scoring or challenging conditions.
 
For all the power and aggression at their disposal, England have often been guilty of using a cannon to try kill a mosquito.
 
When England do come unstuck in their favoured format, it has usually been a case of plan A going down in a blaze of glory, while plan B remains locked in a box in the Lord's long room. 
 
In the final two ODIs against India, Root reminded everyone what he brings to the party - and banished any doubt that he has a massive role to play if Eoin Morgan and company are to lift the World Cup for the first time next year.
 
The surfaces provided for those matches were never going to allow 400-plus scores and England needed a steady hand on the wheel. Root's technical strengths enabled him to effectively neutralise the threat posed by India spinner Kuldeep Yadav while keeping the scoreboard ticking over.
 
Two unbeaten tons would secure Root the Man of the Series award and restore his reputation as the best batsman in the country. 
 
After the disappointment of being dropped from the T20I side, Root asked himself how he could be of service to the team. The answer was achieved by being a foil for the hitters around him and by playing his natural game.

England will continue to be a team that go hard from the outset, but with Root in the middle order, they have a man capable of controlling the tempo of the game and ensuring challenging surfaces don't cause them to collapse in a heap.

Root provides England with balance, marrying the ultra modern with the traditional underneath a calm fa├žade. He will be integral to the team's plans to bring home the World Cup now that he has found his place.   

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Written by Jonhenry Wilson for Hollywoodbets

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