Joe Root: the most boring one-day batsman in the world

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Joe Root (via ICC video)

2019 Cricket World Cup, Game 6, England v Pakistan

Joe Root is an incredibly skilful batsman, but let’s be honest: we’ve all got the gist now.

We all know what immaculate strokeplay looks like, Joe. We all know you can find a run off every kind of delivery imaginable. No-one’s impressed. Well, no, that’s not true – we’re all impressed; we’re just not very interested.

Another of Root’s great qualities is that he doesn’t make mistakes very often. Great stuff, Joe. Real spectacular stuff. Let’s see how much calm, sensible decision-making makes it into the highlights. Let’s drop Jos Buttler’s ramp shot and a fired-up Wahab Riaz tearing in with his mad old man hair flapping in the breeze and include a bit more risk-free accumulation in their place, eh?

We wrote about this phenomenon in our latest piece for Cricket 365, but there’s another angle on the whole thing that we didn’t explore there.

Can a chanceless run-a-ball hundred cost your side the match these days? And if so, how bonkers is that?


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  1. Cost them the match? He dragged, and then, kept them in it. It was for the rest to win it.

    As an aside, and if only in jest, your bowling ‘unit’ doesn’t look too bad a bet against leaking the first 500 either. #WorldCupBanter

  2. Somebody I know was listening to Radio 2 while cooking. Liza Tarbuck early Saturday evening. Listen, it was a friend of a friend.
    Anyway, a listener texted in. She was driving her daughter home and the daughter asked why all those men were doing karate in a field. It was a cricket match.

    1. That’s a crucial first full stop there, ‘fab.
      Who’s your tip for the WC title?

  3. If you can nurdle enough twos and threes to top up the singles and make up for any dot balls, then in principle it should be possible to hit an almost boundary-free, potentially chanceless, century with a strike rate of, let’s say 120 to 140. But this is obviously harder than it sounds because I can’t recall much by way of actual examples…

  4. I certainly don’t thing Root’s century cost them the game, the mediocre fielding and failure of 4 of the other 5 “freakish” batsmen cost them. I’d instead phrase it that he was a net run rate rescuer of a potential disaster.

    1. Jason Roy cost us the game. Shoddy work in the field and so far in this WC he’s scored 62 runs off 60 balls. Not far from the maligned run-a-ball. When will the man accept he’s tinder, dammit?

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