Former England cricketer Michael Atherton feels that Joe Root might be relieved from the captaincy duties after the completion of the Ashes 2021-22. His remarks came after England’s lacklustre performance in the third Test of the series. With that defeat, Australia takes an unassailable lead of 3-0 and thereby retain the urn of the Ashes.
Writing in his column for The Times, Michael Atherton expressed that he isn’t convinced of Root wanting to lead England’s Test side after the Ashes.
“It is hard to see that Root will want to carry on after the end of this series. He has now failed in his quest for the Ashes on three occasions and has lost seven out of eight Tests in Australia, more than any other England captain. The bruising experience of four years ago has been followed by what feels like an even more disastrous tour.”
“There comes a point where a captain simply feels he has nothing more to give or offer and that players would benefit from a change of voice as much as anything. He has probably reached that point.”
The best result Root has achieved as captain in Ashes was in 2019. The series resulted in 2-2. Under his leadership, England suffered 4-0 defeat in 2017-18 and might suffer another whitewash in the ongoing Ashes series in Australia.
Michael Atherton further said that Ben Stokes is likely to be the only candidate who can lead the Test team going ahead if Joe Root steps down from his role.
“Whether England will want to burden Stokes, such a key all-rounder, with extra responsibility is uncertain. Stuart Broad and James Anderson are near the end of their time and no one else is sure of their place in the team.”