Joe Root’s absence leaves 'massive hole' in England's top order, says Eoin Morgan

Eoin Morgan admitted Joe Root’s absence in England’s one-day international series against India this week leaves a “massive hole” in their top order.

By Steve Jones
Monday, 22nd March 2021, 1:35 pm

The Test captain, who averages 50.1 and has made 16 centuries after 149 matches in the format, has not returned to Asia for the final leg of the tour ahead of matches on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday.

With travel routes posing a logistical challenge and a mandatory quarantine period on arrival in India, Root, alongside seamer Chris Woakes, will enjoy an extended rest period.

“Obviously losing Joe Root leaves a massive hole for a guy who scores at a run a ball and averages 50, he’s an exceptional player and has been for a long time,” Morgan said.

Joe Root of England catches a ball during an England Nets Session at Newlands Stadium on November 26, 2020 in Cape Town, South Africa.

“I hope it doesn’t change the dynamics too much. We will miss him but it’s just got to be a matter of somebody slotting in at three and going about it in their own business.”

Fast bowler Jofra Archer will also miss out with an ongoing injury in his right elbow.

Archer has just completed five Twenty20 appearances for England in the space of nine days, bowling his maximum allocation of 20 overs, but the pain in his elbow has deteriorated enough to force action.

“I can’t give a medical opinion,” Morgan added. “We know the situation with his elbow, which got progressively worse, and we know it needs investigation. So only time will tell.

“The duty of care is towards the player. He’s given his heart and soul to us since he’s been involved, so all the care and attention will be given to him in order to get the best result possible.”