Is England’s Bazball approach affecting Joe Root’s batting?

Joe Root
Image Credits: Twitter

English batter Joe Root has been under heavy criticism in recent weeks for failing to contribute runs with the bat in the ongoing Test series against India. He has managed to accumulate only 77 runs in six innings, averaging 12.8.

Cricket pundits have an opinion that England’s Bazball approach is affecting the right-handed batter’s performance. Root is known for his solid defensive technique and likes to score runs carefully at a moderate strike rate.

However, the team’s change in batting approach has somewhere put pressure on him to play more aggressively. Many feel that the batter is losing his wicket as he is trying too hard and getting away from his strengths.

The case became even more evident when Root recently lost his wicket while playing a reverse scoop against Jasprit Bumrah on the third day of the third Test match. He gave away his previous wicket at a crucial time and the English batting unit went on to collapse.

However, is that really the case? Let’s find out.

Joe Root before and after Bazball

Joe Root
Joe Root. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Brendon McCullum became England’s head coach in the red-ball cricket on 22nd May 2022. He along with skipper Ben Stokes decided to develop an approach to bat more aggressively in the Test matches irrespective of results. It was named Bazball unofficially by the fans later on.

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Let’s see Root’s performance before and post the Bazball adoption.

Before Bazball, he scored 18,090 runs at an average of 49.2 and a strike rate of 54.7. Post the bazball, he has smashed 2175 runs at an average of 50.1 and a healthy strike-rate of 73.7, including five centuries and seven fifties.

IT clearly shows that Root’s batting has taken a slight jump post-bazball. His strike rate has improved immensely but not at the cost of average. So he is certainly enjoying the new approach.

England’s struggle is understandable

It is just that the 33-year-old batter is going through a lean patch. No matter how big the name is, all cricketers go through such phases. So there is nothing to worry too much about as he is a champion player and will make a bounce back soon.

In England’s tour of India 2020-21, Root ended up being the leading run-scorer for the English side. He smashed 368 runs in four test matches at an average of 46. Though England had lost the series 3-1.

Obviously, Root’s poor batting form is affecting Ben Stoke & Co. in the ongoing series. He has been a pillar in the batting unit and is arguably one of the best foreign batters when it comes to playing spin. So that is a huge miss for sure.