Root continues to feed on Indian bowling, gets 7th ton against them


England skipper Joe Root continued to feed on Indian bowling as he reached his 22nd century here on the third day of the second Test at Lord’s on Saturday. This was his seventh Test ton — including third this year — against India.

Root, who arrived at the crease on Friday with England struggling at 23/2, played a captain’s knock and crafted important partnerships with Rory Burns (85 runs for the third wicket), Jonny Bairstow (121 runs for the fourth wicket), and Jos Buttler (54 runs for the fifth wicket) as he moved to his century in the second session.

The 30-year-old England batting mainstay had on Friday gone past Graham Gooch (8900 runs) to become the second-highest run-getter for England in Test cricket history behind Alastair Cook. On Saturday, during his century knock, he completed 9,000 runs. Only Cook (12,472 runs) has more runs for England in Test cricket.

Five of Root’s tons against India have come in England in 12 Tests while his 10 Tests in India have yielded two centuries, including a double century in the first Test in Chennai, in February this year.

The right-handed batsman has been in exceptional form this year. He scored two centuries – including a double hundred — in the two Tests in Sri Lanka before starting the away series in India with another double in Chennai.

Although he failed in the remaining three Tests in India on extremely spin-friendly pitches, the right-handed batsman scored 64 and 109 in the first Test at Nottingham that ended on Sunday. He has now followed it up with a century at Lord’s.

Root, who became the first England captain to get five tons in a calendar year, is the top run-getter in Tests in 2021 with over 1200 runs in his 10th Test. The next best – Rohit Sharma – has 669 runs after the first innings of the ongoing Lord’s Test.