England’s new Test skipper Ben Stokes has revealed the batting position of former captain and star batter Joe Root. The Christchurch-born, who is currently representing Durham in the ongoing County Championship Division Tw0 2022, said that Root would bat at number four in the upcoming home Test series against New Zealand.

Notably, Root, who stood down from captaincy last month after five years in the role, has batted at number three during England’s recent Test battle against West Indies, which the visitors lost 1-0. Root performed well at number four, finishing as England’s leading scorer with 289 runs across his six innings, including two centuries.

However, when it comes to his overall career, Root has a far better record at number four. The 31-year-old has a remarkable average of 51.27 when batting at number four, compared to 39.67 at three.

Stokes reckoned that Root bats his level best at number four before confirming that he will bat at number six in the forthcoming red-ball series against the Black Caps, starting June 2.

“I’ve already spoken with Joe. I’ve asked him to go back to four, and I’m going to be at six. Wherever Joe bats, he gets runs, but his best position is at four. Joe will probably be averaging 90 now instead of 60 (Root’s average in 2021), so it’ll be good,” said Stokes, as quoted by SkySports.

The 30-year-old urged people to put their hands up for selection at three and five. Stokes mentioned he would be focusing on who is doing good in the County Championship to find candidates for the number three and five positions.

“I feel him at four and me at six gives us a bit of experience in that gap. So you can obviously see where the places are opening up for people to put their hands up, it’s three and five. I now feel I have to follow a lot more of the county games now to see who is scoring runs rather than just checking the Durham score,” added Stokes.


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