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“Ben Foakes will be our wicket-keeper for the entire Tour” – Joe Root

February 17, 2021

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Ben Foakes is going to be England's wicket-keeper for the remaining three Tests against India, according to Joe Root. Jonny Bairstow may play a role of a specialist batsman in the next game. Ben Foakes has got approval after Jos Buttler returned home to spend quality time with his family.

England’s decision to avoid Bairstow for the opening two Tests continued the ongoing debate. So much so that legendary batsman Geoffrey Boycott criticized the management, saying a break has been “forced” on the 31-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman.

Joe Root said it in terms of allowing Foakes a long run behind the stumps. “I don’t think it changes much, really. Foakes is here to keep. He’s going to be our wicket-keeper for the remaining tour if he stays fit. Jonny is a fine player, a fine batter in his own right, and he will come in as an option with the bat,” Joe Root answered to Sportskeeda throughout the virtual media conference on Friday (February 12).

Ben Foakes will play a Test match for first time since January 2019. Joe Root declared Foakes is hungry to play at the highest level. In three away Tests against Sri Lanka in 2018, Foakes scored 277 runs at an average of 69.25. Nevertheless, consistent performances by Jos Buttler resulted in Foakes playing just five Tests since then.

Joe Root: “Competition for places fuels high expectations”

“Competition for places is what set the high standards. And now for him [Foakes] to come in and hopefully do well and have an impact on this series is really beneficial for us as a team. As it means that everyone’s going to keep working hard and try to push the levels of one another higher, and that’s how we see a team grow.

“And I think the best thing about the environment that we’ve is the real enjoyment of one another’s a success, you can even see it on the guys’ faces, you can see them playing together as well – in and around practice – and benefitting from sharing ideas and talking through distinct methods of going about situations and techniques. That’s a really incredible place to be in,” Joe Root explained.

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