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Root a good bet to top score for England in 2nd Test

| 02.12.2013

They say that one man’s misfortune is another man’s gain, something which Joe Root will be trying to his best to prove.

The Yorkshire batsmen is certain to move up the order when England reconvene with Australia in the Ashes this week thanks to the unfortunate illness which has seen Jonathon Trott leave the tour and return home, and at 5/1 to top score for the tourists in the second test, Root can be the lucky man for punters.

If the feeling that this wouldn’t be England’s most successful Ashes series was evident before it even began, it is most certainly there now following a the loss of Trott and the heavy 381 run defeat in the first test where Alistair Cook’s side were comprehensively outplayed and well beaten by a rejuvenated Aussie side.

Root was one of the few members of the batting order to come out of the test with any credit, with the 22 year-old ending the second innings unbeaten on 26 with a resolute display, managing to withstand the ferocious deliveries of Mitchell Johnson with impressive aplomb given his inexperience.

And back on familiar soil – he spent five months in Adelaide in the winter of 2010-11 at the local cricket academy – Root looks like the value shout to top score. He is decent enough form, hitting 36, 58 not out and 75 in the warm-up games down under and already has two test centuries to his name this year, including a knock of 180 against Australia at Headingly in July.

The poor form of Root’s teammates, while concerning for England’s chances of retaining the urn, makes the 5/1 look like decent value. No batsmen other than with Cook managed to hit more than a half century in either innings of the first test, but Cook is the 11/4 favourite and with 4/1 second favourite Kevin Pietersen also struggling to make runs, the 5/1 on Root is the call.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Shaun Curran