Twenty-Second Test Century

Lord’s – Joe Root’s twenty-second Test century lifted England from a dire 23-2 to a respectable 392 all out – a lead of 27 over India in the second Test.

Joe is in outstanding batting form in 2021. He appears to be in control of the unruly complexity of batting and crafting innings that define a player’s career.

When Joe walked down the pavilion steps at Lord’s on day two, England were 23-2 and in need of a captain’s innings

Given the current collective frailty of England’s batting achieving parity with India’s first innings 364 appeared a distant prospect.

Joe’s disciplined and controlled batting gave England a sense of solidity and resolve. He batted out the second day and then from first to last ball on day three.

On the Third Day

The third day began with England on 119-3 and Joe closing in on his fifty-first half century. He had already passed 2000 Test runs against India the previous day.

Joe reached his third consecutive 50 (7 fours) in the series off 82 balls. With Jonny Bairstow (57) Joe shared a fourth wicket 121 run partnership and England were edging towards India’s 364.

Joe reached his twenty-second Test century off 200 balls. This was his fifth 100 of 2021, including two double-centuries.

On reaching 113, Joe passed 9000 Test runs – those watching witnessing a batter in complete command of his craft.

After Bairstow departed, Joe shared 50 run partnerships with Jos Buttler (23) and Moeen Ali (27).

Batters came and batters went, but Joe kept on batting. After facing 226 balls he passed his 150.

Joe eventually ran out of partners when Jimmy Anderson was out off the last ball of the day, leaving Joe unbeaten on 180*

With England back in the Test, attention now turns towards India who will start 27 runs behind on the fourth day.

(PhoenixMedia Image Created from a Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)