India vs England: Joe Root remains hopeful that tourists can turn fourth Test around

The tourists had to turn to Root's off-spin to get more out of a turning pitch

Chris Stocks
in Mumbai
Saturday 10 December 2016 13:48
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Root's part-time off-spin claimed the wickets of Patel and Ashwin
Root's part-time off-spin claimed the wickets of Patel and Ashwin

Joe Root has admitted England may have got their team wrong for this fourth Test but believes the tourists can still win to take the series down to the wire despite India captain Virat Kohli’s brilliant century.

Kohli’s unbeaten 147 has put the hosts in charge of this contest, India now holding a first-innings lead of 51 after reaching the end of the third day on 451 for seven.

England can partly blame themselves for the situation they find themselves in, Adil Rashid dropping Kohli on 68 and Root failing to take a chance to dismiss Jayant Yadav on eight.

Jayant went to reach the close on 30 during an unbroken 87-run stand with Kohli. The decision not to pick three spinners on a pitch that is taking sharp turn also appears a mistake by England.

Chris Woakes went 77 overs of India’s innings without bowling, while leg-spinner Rashid was forced to undertake an arduous 28-over spell on this third day.

Root’s part-time off-spin also gained the wickets of Parthiv Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin. Yet the fact he was even bowling pointed to the fact England had got their selection wrong.

"Throughout the tour we have played three spinners so there is no point me bowling,” said Root. “It was nice to get on and make a contribution.”


Asked if England had picked the wrong team, Root admitted: "In hindsight maybe not. But you look at the surface on the morning of day one and leading into the game you expect bounce and carry. It will probably be more spinner friendly moving forward and we need to work with what we have.”

England had thought they had made a potentially match-winning first-innings score of 400.

However, Alastair Cook’s team, 2-0 down, have a lot to do if they are to conjure up the win they need to keep the series alive.

"You saw when you get in you can make it look quite easy,” he said. “We need to remember what has worked for us individually and get greedy.

"We stuck at it really well. There were times they made it very hard but at no point did we give up. We are still in the game. We need to come out and take wickets tomorrow.”

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