Joe Root Steps Down as Captain and Leaves England in a Tough Situation: 2022

Joe Root steps down after leading England for over five years.

Joe Root stepping down was something that was waited on since the Ashes ended. In hindsight, him hanging around till the West Indies tour may turn out to be a good move. Doing so allowed England to have a familiar face in the leadership group as their coaches, managers and directors have moved on or been sacked following the Ashes.

As a captain, he gave it his all. He was monstrous with the bat, and did everything he could to save a failing batting line-up, whose struggles can be put down to various issue starting with the county circuit. With the ball though, Joe Root was often poor with his tactics, and that has left him in trouble. He did what he could as a player, shuffled up and down the order, fought the rotation policy and white-ball fever, but struggled to arrest England’s slide.

Joe Root finishes with the most wins and most losses as an England skipper. Another feature of his captaincy was the use of bowlers. He often over-bowled bowlers, and the use of Jofra Archer is prime example as to how bowlers were overworked in his captaincy.

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Despite the lack of results and poor batting from his teammates, the blame went to Joe Root, and he is finally moving out despite the lack of a suitable candidate behind him. There is Ben Stokes who is suitable, but his fitness and mental health leave him in a tough situation.

For now, England is struggling without a captain, coach, director and selector. There has been just one test win in the last 17 tests, and England has also dropped the likes of Anderson and Broad. The selection has been confusing, and with Root out, leadership becomes a tougher prospect.

Now that Joe Root has resigned, England has a fresh set of appointments to look at ahead of the next test assignment. They still have Paul Collingwood as an interim head coach. He has been with the side for a while and could make a move as the permanent head coach. With regards to the director, England may give Andrew Strauss another go as he is one who is respected in the Board.

The managing director and selectors’ role is still in question as suitable candidates are yet to appear. With regards to the captaincy, Ben Stokes seems the prime candidate. He is the player in the side other than Joe Root to have a secure spot in the eleven. For Stokes though, his fitness is a concern, and an all-rounder as captain may not work as well. Andrew Flintoff and Ian Botham both did the role before and ended up over bowling themselves.

Other options would be to bring back Rory Burns or James Vince. Both players have nice numbers as captains in the county circuit, but neither are regulars in the Test eleven. Jos Buttler is another option and he is already a candidate for the white-ball captaincy after Eoin Morgan decides to step down. James Anderson is an option, but his age is a concern, while Stuart Broad is another option, and has led in the past. Stuart Broad’s comments in the Ashes though may make it tough for him to take the role as he is often known to speak his mind out.

The lack of captaincy options shows the issue in the English team. No player seems to be a settled member in the eleven, and England will have some work to do if they are to make a stable side. They have constantly chopped and changed players, affecting Joe Root as he struggled to find the rhythm with one player, making it tougher to find results.

The most immediate priority for England will be to fill up the leadership holes and find a way to improve the county system as the batting is struggling. They need to bring more depth in the squad as the amount of cricket  to be played over the next few months is daunting and will be very taxing on the players.