Joe Root gears up for a ‘tough winter’

England Test captain Joe Root is worried about the amount of workload the players will have to handle once cricket resumes after a long break.

England were supposed to play Sri Lanka in a two-Test series mid-March but it was postponed indefinitely amidst the fears of a global pandemic. It is possible that the players will be forced to play a lot of back-to-back series with little to no rest once the cricket resumes.

“It would be a very tough winter, a huge amount of workload, especially on the multi-format players, but we have had some tough winters in the past and found ways to get through them,” Root told the reporters via a conference call on Monday, 30 March.

“It would be interesting to see how they would fit it in looking at the schedule as it right now but if it was to go ahead, we would have to be able to adapt, look at the squad sizes we take over and make sure guys weren’t blown out and overworked.

“If we are lucky enough to be in a position where we can play then we should try but whether Tests overpower other formats is going to be difficult to know. We have to be very open minded.”

In the absence of any live cricket, there have been reports of potential pay cuts for the players. However, Root is not too bothered about that and just wants to be ready to play once the right moment arrives.

“I am sure at some point in the coming weeks there will be a discussion but those discussions will probably take place between the PCA [Professional Cricketers’ Association] and the ECB. Until that happens, that is not my area of expertise,” he said.

We have had some tough winters in the past and found ways to get through them.

Joe Root

“We just have to concentrate on being as fit as we can be for when we get back playing cricket and making sure we are doing everything we can to look after the community.”

Root also admitted that while he has been keeping busy and practising in the backyard, it is difficult to be separated from the team. “You can never really replicate the dressing-room environment and building something as a group of players.

“You spend a long time working towards something collectively and that’s something you can take for granted, especially when you play as much as we do. It has become more evident the longer we spend time apart and, as this goes on, I can see that this is what sticks out.”



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