Former Australia skipper Ian Chappell has said that Joe Root’s captaincy lacks imagination which might haunt England during the Ashes slated to be played later this year.
The first Men’s Ashes Test will begin at Brisbane’s Gabba from December 8-12 ahead of a day-night Test at the Adelaide Oval from December 16-20.
Chappell said in Australia there are situations when a skipper has to be imaginative which isn’t the strength of the England skipper.
“Root’s captaincy often lacks imagination and reason. His tendency to have long discussions with senior players is reminiscent of Alastair Cook at his worst,” Chappell wrote in his column for ESPNcricinfo.
“There’s a difference between a captain who consults and one who is uncertain; dithering is a bad look for a captain. There are times in Australia when a captain has to be imaginative in order to force the issue and this is not one of Root’s strengths,” he added.
Chappell said England has a group of fast bowlers who can win a series but the team lacks strength in the batting lineup.
“England possesses a potential series-winning group of fast bowlers. It is the top-order batting and Joe Root’s captaincy that should be cause for concern,” said Chappell.
The former Australia skipper highlighted how pacers Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, and Josh Hazlewood can easily tear apart English batting.
“The opening combination of Dominic Sibley and Rory Burns is both ungainly and unconvincing. Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood should rejoice if both names appear in the top slots on the team sheet at the Gabba,” said Chappell.
“Given the skill of Australia’s pace trio, poor starts could be a death sentence for England,” he added.
For the first time in 26 years, the final Ashes Test will not be staged in Sydney.
The traditional Boxing Day and New Year’s Tests will be played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (December 26-30) and Sydney Cricket Ground (January 5-9) respectively, with the final Test scheduled for Perth’s Optus Stadium (January 14-18).
The fifth and final match of the 2019 Ashes was won by England by 135 runs to level the series 2-2. However, Australia retained the urn as they had previously won the Ashes in the 2017/18 season.
This was the first time in 47 years that the Ashes ended as a draw. The last series which ended as a draw between England and Australia was in 1972.