Why Joe Root can't wait to play in front of spectators again - for Yorkshire and England
Sheffield’s Joe Root admits he can’t wait for the return of spectators to Yorkshire and England games this summer after admitting that fans helped his England side over the line in one of the most remarkable Test matches ever seen at Headingley in 2019.
The last Ashes Test match at Yorkshire’s home ground saw England sneak home by a single wicket thanks to the brilliance of Ben Stokes, roared on by a raucous Headingley crowd who have been starved of similar scenes since by the coronavirus pandemic.
But Boris Johnson’s announcement on Monday evening means that Yorkshire can start preparing for the return of spectators for the Championship game against Sussex in early June.
And Root, who will make his latest appearance for the White Rose against his brother Billy and Glamorgan later this week, said: “As a sport, cricket is entertainment and is there for people to watch and enjoy and be a part of. “You think back to the Northants game [when Yorkshire won by one run earlier this season], the atmosphere in the ground for the members would have been amazing and it'd have been brilliant to be a part of live.
“Hopefully there'll be many more games this summer that people can interact and be a part of, and as players we feed off that atmosphere created by people watching and loving the game. I'm very much looking forward to seeing them back first-hand.”
Headingley will also host a Test match against India in August, and Root can’t wait to play in front of a crowd again after casting his mind back to that remarkable Stokes-inspired Test match during the 2019 Ashes.
“There have been a number of fantastic games here, and the Ashes will take some beating,” smiled Root, with a glint in his eye.
“There was a genuine belief from the crowd, even when we were nine down, that we could go on and win the game. It had a huge impact, it was like we had an extra player on our team and it makes it even more special.
“Hopefully there'll be many more games and occasions like that with interaction with the crowd like that, this summer and beyond.”
Yorkshire’s trip to Glamorgan will be screened live on Sky Sports.