Many England players have been suffering from an illness and their participation in the first Test between Pakistan and England in Rawalpindi can be an issue. Meanwhile, Joe Root also joked on this matter as he stated “There’s going to have to be Marcus Trescothick, Rob Key and Brendon McCullum as the new top three for tomorrow.” However, Root himself was not well on Tuesday evening but recovered well to join his teammates in the nets on Wednesday (November 30) as well.
“As far as I’m aware there are a few guys not feeling 100 percent but – I didn’t feel great yesterday but I woke up better today – so hopefully it’s just a 24-hour virus and I don’t think it’s food poisoning or Covid or anything like that. I think it’s just one of those things that we’ve unfortunately picked up as a group – we’ve tried to do absolutely everything, we’ve prepared really well for this game and sometimes life throws things at you but we’ll do everything we can to be right tomorrow and be right and ready to go,” Joe Root said.
However, this isn’t the first time in recent years that the England team has faced this ahead of a tour. On their 2019-20 tour to South Africa, they had to visit the washroom during the Boxing Day Test in Centurion as well.
“I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. It is horrible,” he again said. “Running on and off the field all the time. But sometimes it is part and parcel of where you are at as a team. That was very unfortunate because a lot of us got ill during the Test match, not going into the game. But hopefully, it is not something we have to contend with, and everyone will turn up well tomorrow and we can enjoy what is an exciting series and have cricket as a talking point.”
Meanwhile, Root rejected the possibility of the current bug that the players are affected with in Islamabad having any relation to food as well.
Joe Root added, “It is unfortunate we are in this situation, but we don’t think it is food-related. I don’t think there is any correlation between the two and in fact the chef is ill as well, so I don’t think it is the food. The thing is we have been trying to bring a chef away with us for a couple of years now. This is the first opportunity we have had to do it. Look at all the other international sporting teams around, even Premier League and Championship teams have their own chef, so we think from a nutrition and performance side of things, we are trying to do everything we can to optimise ourselves and be in the right position to perform.”
However, Joe Root didn’t give many details on what the team management is planning right now as well.
“Ollie Pope did it the other day and he’d do a great job, so we’ll see. Hopefully, it isn’t a conversation we need to have. It is frustrating. Today is generally an optional session anyway, so a few of the guys wouldn’t have come in anyway. There is not much you can do, other than try to do the right things and hydrate yourself and do the things away from the game that will serve you well overnight in preparation for tomorrow,” he again shared.
“It is where we are at as a team. Sometimes this happens, and when we’re all tight together in the same hotel, then it can spread around. We’ve done what we can to try and mitigate that, and we’ll see how we shape up tomorrow. It is part and parcel of being on tour. Sometimes these things get thrown at you and that is why you have 15 guys here, so in case of injury or illness you are ready to go,” Joe Root concluded.