Former England captain Michael Atherton feels England captain Joe Root might be on the verge of ending his tenure as Test captain. Atherton also said that Root will not retain his captaincy if the ongoing Ashes tour becomes worse for England as they have lost the second Test by 275 runs after the first Test at the Gabba by eight wickets as well.
Speaking to The Times, Michael Atherton said that there is no way back for Joe Root if he fails to register a win in the Ashes. The veteran was also concerned about the lack of alternatives to succeed Root as captain as well.
He stated: “If the tour continues to go this badly, it is hard to see how Root will remain as captain. Ashes tours have often done for England captains and Root is nearer the end of his cycle than the beginning. There is not a rash of alternatives, but the notion that there is no one to take over is the worst rationale for keeping the job.”
Atherton also slammed coach Chris Silverwood for doing a poor job as the coach as well as the selector, blaming the selection decisions since the beginning of 2021. However, for the Boxing Day Test, Michael Atherton shared that England should focus on solving England’s batting problems as well.
He continued: “As the head coach and main selector, he has to shoulder along with Joe Root. There have been a rash of poor decisions so far – selection, mainly – for which he now has the final call. For the past 12 months, lots of selections have been suspect; the move to invest responsibility for selection with the head coach was always a bad one.”
“Bring in Mark Wood and Jack Leach, leave out Chris Woakes and whichever one of the other three seamers conditions and/or state of fitness demand. The batting needs urgent attention more generally, but given that no one else has played any cricket, I would give the same batsmen another chance,” he again added.
“The County Championship has been hollowed out by the decision to play the T20 Blast and the Hundred in the main summer months, thus relegating the championship to the margins of the season. Pitches are poor, the standard of first-class cricket is poor,” Michael Atherton concluded.