Joe Root will stay in England T20I side even if Ben Stokes returns, says Paul Farbrace

Sport360 staff 01:19 29/06/2018
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Joe Root will remain in England’s side for the Twenty20 internationals (T20Is) against India despite all-rounder Ben Stokes returning to the team, Paul Farbrace has said.

Stokes will mark his return from a hamstring injury that he sustained during the second Test against Pakistan in June, when he turns out for county club Durham in their T20 game against Yorkshire on July 5.

Stokes will only start as a batsman in that game though, and is expected to be fit for the third and final T20I against India that his scheduled to be played in Bristol on July 8.

England have been in magnificent limited-overs form, after registering a 28-run win over Australia in a one-off T20I that came after a 5-0 thrashing of the Australians in the 50-over format.

Farbrace is of the view that there is a place for Root in all the formats including the T20I team.

“Absolutely. You need your best batsman,” insisted Farbrace. “I can’t believe anybody else in our set-up would argue against that.

“He (Root) is world-class in all forms of the game. You do need nous, and you do need people playing in different ways.


“There will be times when he is the outstanding player in a T20 game and gets us over the line.

“The best players adapt and score runs, whether it is 20 overs or 50 overs or Test match cricket, and he is without doubt one of the finest players in the world.

“He could go anywhere from three to six – and it is nice having that flexibility and that cool, calm head.”

Meanwhile, the stand-in coach is excited to have Stokes back as soon as possible, and stressed the things he brings to the side.

“Ben – the fact he is a three-in-one, he can bowl and he is the best fielder – you are going to bring him in as soon as he is available,” he added.

Wicketkeeper batsman Jos Buttler was promoted to opener against Australia on Wednesday and he took his opportunity by smashing England’s fastest-ever T20 fifty, off just 22 balls.

Alex Hales didn’t have bad outing either, scoring 49 off 24 balls.

“Jos played magnificently well… (but) you could easily argue a couple of others could have had a go – and maybe Halesy walked to the crease with a bit of a point to prove,” added Farbrace.

And while there is competition in the side for places – England limited-overs captain Eoin Morgan is set to take the final call over who misses out if and when Stokes is recalled.

“You are going to go with the captain pretty much every time, because he takes the team on to the field,” said Farbrace.

“There are not going to be any violent disagreements. But we were sitting chatting about the possibilities – and it is not obvious.”

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