Former England batsman Ian Bell has stated that England skipper Joe Root has been the best player of spin that he has seen. Bell has played alongside excellent players of spin like Alastair Cook and Kevin Pietersen, but he believes Joe Root possesses a unique ability to dominate the opposition spin bowlers.
Joe Root has had a sensational 2021 individually. He scored double hundreds in testing conditions in Sri Lanka and India and Bell believes the England skipper will be ready for the challenge that Australia possesses Down Under.
Speaking to cricket.com.au, Ian Bell explained how important it is for English players to do well on Australian soil. Bell feels tackling the Australian pace battery in their own conditions will be a challenge for the England batting line-up and Jor Root will lead the charge. In this regard, Bell said:
“The last 12 months have been incredible. As a player of spin, he (Joe Root) is the best English player I’ve ever seen. This will be his biggest challenge no doubt, but there’s no doubt as a batsman, he’s well up for it. For all of us as English players, this is the one place you want to come and win. Individually as well, you want to have that on your list of achievements to have batted well in these conditions.”
England batting line-up will need to help Joe Root: Ian Bell
Australia will probably take the field in the first Test with a three-pronged pace attack of Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, and skipper Pat Cummins. Cummins in particular will be high on confidence as he has had a terrific past 18 months with the ball.
Ian Bell reckons the England batting line-up will have a job on their hands to keep the Aussie pace attack at bay. England has particularly shown weakness in their top order and it was evident in their series against India earlier this year. Thus, Bell has urged the other England batsmen to step up and provide much-needed support to Joe Root.
“I look at the Australian attack, they’re at full-strength, fully fit, and all firing so that’s a real challenge. So, England’s going to have to score big runs. The top three (are key), I’m sure Australia is having meetings that they’ll target them with the new Kookaburra ball to get Rooty in early (at No.4). I’m expecting a really good series from him, it’s just can the rest of the batting line-up help him along the way,” Bell concluded.