Root ready for test of captaincy credentials

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YORKSHIRE’S Joe Root will enter more unchartered territory today when he captains England Lions for the first time, against New Zealand.

The 22-year-old has made an instant success of his new missions in international cricket over the past six months, however – starting with his Test debut in Nagpur – and is ready for his latest, too.

Root, who has a double-hundred and another century under his belt for Yorkshire already this summer, admits he has precious little captaincy experience at any level.

“I haven’t had a great deal – a bit of age-group stuff,” he said. “But I’m really looking forward to the challenge of it.

“It’s a great privilege, and I’m really pleased to get the opportunity to do it.”

He will bat at No 3, having spent his four Tests so far in England’s middle order, and made his name as an opener for his county.

Root knows he will have plenty of advice to hand in the Lions ranks in the four-day match at Grace Road, with the first Test set to start against the Kiwis at Lord’s next week.

“There’s obviously a lot of experience in this dressing room as well, so I’m sure I’ll have people to help me out if I need it,” he said. “It’s a great chance for the lads to show everyone how good they are.”

Zimbabwe completed a 2-1 series victory over Bangladesh in Bulawayo after Vusi Sibanda’s 103 not out led Brendan Taylor’s side to a seven-wicket victory.

Sibanda smashed nine fours and two sixes and backed up by Sean Williams’s 55, Zimbabwe reached the target of 248 with 17 balls to spare.