With the news, last week that Yorkshire batsman Joe Root had been named as England’s new test captain, Matthew has provided his expert opinion on the decision to award Root the captaincy as well as how he thinks it will affect the England team as a whole.
Root takes on the role having limited experience as captain in first class cricket having only led Yorkshire three times and once for the England Lions side. Despite this Hoggy believes that Root is the right man to captain the side.
“I think he will be an inspirational captain, he is extremely dedicated, he leads by example and he spends a lot of time on the training pitch. With the squad that he’s got and with Alistair Cook still in the team things look good going forwards.”
“Although he hasn’t got a lot of experience of captaincy, he is the right man for the job and will be an exciting captain. He will have to learn as he goes along but I think his personality will come out in the role and we will hopefully see some wonderful things from him.”
Matthew’s former Yorkshire and England teammate Michael Vaughan is a personal hero of Joe Root, and captained England in 51 test matches. Hoggy said that if Root can emulate some of the qualities that Vaughan did in his career then his tenure as captain will be a successful one.
“If Joe is as good at man management as Michael was then he’ll go a long way. Michael had a knack of being able to talk to each individual player in a different way to ensure that he was able to get the best out of everyone on the field.”
Root’s first test match as captain will come against South Africa this summer and the team will be hoping to bounce back from their 4-0 series defeat to India in November. Hoggy was keen to stress that the focus of this tour should be on the team as a whole and not just Root.
“Of course, everybody wants to get off to a winning start but he will be in very early days of his captaincy during this test and the captain can’t bat and bowl for everyone. It is important for the team not just Joe Root that we play well. We had a torrid time in India like a lot of teams do over there, so England will want to get back on track. We can’t put too much emphasis on the form of the team simply because Joe Root is now the captain. There is excitement around the squad with Root as captain and hopefully this excitement will transfer into performances.”
Alistair Cook stepped down as test captain two weeks ago after five years in the role and Hoggy praised his tenure in charge and how his style differs from Roots.
“Alistair Cook was a very safe and sensible captain. Joe can offer that surprise element as he will do things more instinctively. Overall, he’s been brilliant and will go down as the captain with the most test appearances and runs. He has a fantastic win ratio and won the Ashes twice. He will go down in history as one of the greatest ever captains of the England cricket team.”
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