England news January 14, 2013

Vaughan tips Root to open in New Zealand


Michael Vaughan, the former England captain, has called for Joe Root to open the batting on England's tour to New Zealand in March.

Root made his England debut in the fourth Test against India in Nagpur and Vaughan saw enough evidence to suggest he will be opening the batting with Alastair Cook sooner rather than later.

"He looked an England player from the minute he went out to bat in the Test match," Vaughan told ESPNcricinfo. "He looks like he'll have a tremendous future with the team."

Root made a composed 73 to help England out of trouble in the first-innings in Nagpur and demonstrated the attacking side of his game in a second-innings unbeaten 20 that saw England safely to a draw.

Vaughan, a batting mentor for Root, also began his career at the same Yorkshire League club, Sheffield Collegiate. He would like to see Root's talent immediately utilised at the top of the order - a move which would also create space in the batting line up for another young, talented Yorkshireman.

"I would go for Root in New Zealand and bring Jonny Bairstow back at No. 6," Vaughan said. "Jonny was unlucky to miss out in India with what he did against South Africa and probably has to do a bit of work on playing spin but if you look at the next 10 months - New Zealand and Australia home and away - it's seam bowling conditions which Johnny plays so well. You'd want to get him back into the team."

Bairstow only played the second Test against India as cover for Ian Bell, who returned home for the birth of his son, and has not travelled with the England ODI squad because of a family illness.

His absence gave Root the chance to make his ODI debut in a winning start for England in the opening match in Rajkot; a performance that impressed Vaughan. "Since the first Test defeat England have been quite outstanding and winning the first ODI was very important to get their confidence back. It was a big win for the team.

"It's a good sign that players are playing to their natural ability. The batting is strong, there is such depth. They can all hit the ball out of the park."

The victory continued England's excellent form in ODIs; form they will hope to carry through to the Champions Trophy in June and an Ashes summer - the ODI leg of which Vaughan will be following on his cycle challenge to raise funds for Chance to Shine and the Laureus Sport for Good foundation.

Vaughan will be joined by other cricketing personalities on a five-leg route from Leeds to London, via Manchester, Birmingham, Cardiff and Southampton.

"Chance to Shine have done a great job of getting cricket played in state schools and the more funds you raise the more expertise you can provide," Vaughan said. "Along the journey we'll be dropping into schools and doing some coaching and getting involved with some of the Laureus projects as well. It's a great opportunity to cycle around the country, raise some money and watch a bit of cricket."

The ODI series follows the Ashes, for which Vaughan has England favourites by a good distance but warns of the ability of Michael Clarke to stir up a new group of players. "In Clarke they have a captain who's very positive, he's very vibrant and has a young set of players around him that are all going to work and play for him and the baggy green. They'll be very well led but I don't think they'll have enough experience to compete against England in English conditions."

The Michael Vaughan Charity Bike Ride will raise funds for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation and Chance to Shine. Go to www.laureus.com/michaelvaughanodibikeride or www.chancetoshine.org

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on January 16, 2013, 21:53 GMT

    I'm guessing that Cook will want another long-standing opening partnership as he had with Strauss, so unless Compton goes on a horrendous run or gets injured, I think he'll be opening in both NZ series and both Ashes series.

  • Mark on January 15, 2013, 20:49 GMT

    It's only a matter of time as to how long it will be before Root ones for England with Cook. The time will depend on how all Compton does in the first test in NZ, how many runs they both score in any warm up games and whether Flower looks long or short term for his test side planning.

    Root will be wasted at six in the order and end up batting with the tail too many times to stifle his proper development whereby he has to marshal the strike etc.He is a top three batsman with the right temperament. His bowling option will also work in his favour whilst the other 5 top order batsmen continue to focus on batting. Why not put Compton at six instead?

  • david on January 15, 2013, 16:07 GMT

    boycs can be typical Yorkshire as he still thinks God was a Yorkshire man, were in fact he was a lancastrian, as was vaughan and only an adopted white rose at that.both can talk a load of tosh sometimes. but i think root offers more in the long run and unlike australia looks a proper cricketer not a T20 player

  • david on January 15, 2013, 15:48 GMT

    me thinks that compton did an ok job. but i would have root as opener in NZ. no disrespects to NZ but it will be an easier tour and more like uk conditions. with them to tour in early summer in the uk, he would have by then if all goes well he will have 4/5 test under his belt.

  • David on January 15, 2013, 14:43 GMT

    So we just ditch Nick Compton, Michael, on the basis of one good test innings for Root? We don't just have to pick promising players from Yorkshire.

  • Simon on January 15, 2013, 14:35 GMT

    Compton is one of the best batsmen in the country. Why drop him? The openers job is to see off the new ball, something he does very, very well. Keep Root at six.

    Strong opening stands are key in test cricket and Compton and Cook provide that.

    Bairstow is next in line should injury hit any of the top 6.

  • Dummy4 on January 15, 2013, 11:44 GMT

    I don't quite understand why you'd drop Compton. If he plays like he did in the county championship last season, he will be invaluable in the ashes, in conditions that he knows. Root has played a handful of first class games, and while he played very well in the last test in India, they were very unique conditions, not English at all. Also, Jonny Bairstow still seemed to have some problems against India...

  • d on January 15, 2013, 9:56 GMT

    England's future is not bleak. 10 easy wins against Australia in the next 12 months for a start.

  • Paul on January 15, 2013, 9:49 GMT

    Mikey 76. I like Geoff Boycott but he is the most one eyed Yorkshireman ever, if Root & Bairstow played for a another County he wouldn't even know of their existence. I don't think it's unreasonable to expect someone who's considered a special talent to score heavily at County level. It's surely a better option than picking players on a hunch. Why not leave him at No.6 ? are you underrating the Kiwi seamers hoping for some easy runs for your boy in the next five Tests ? Dont want Compton (who's earned his place) stealing the boy wonders runs !

  • Roo on January 15, 2013, 7:45 GMT

    @Moneypenney... Agree on your comms... Cannot see any reason for changing the batting order that won a series in India - NZ should have a good squad of seamers, so see how that series works out in NZ & if there is a problem then there is the return NZ series in Eng to try something different...