England v New Zealand: Joe Root backs Graeme Swann to shine
England v New Zealand: Joe Root backs Graeme Swann to play a big part in the remaining two days of the first Test at Lord's
Joe Root backed England spinner Graeme Swann to shine after New Zealand fought their way back into the first Test on day three at Lord’s.
The hosts swiftly ended the Kiwis first innings for a total of 207 runs in the morning session, with Root and Jonathan Trott building a lead of 184 in the afternoon.
However, the Black Caps managed to dismiss Root, Jonny Bairstow, Matt Prior and Trott before the end of play to leave England on 180-6 – 205 runs ahead.
But with two days left in the first Test, Root reckons England bowler Swann could have a big say on the outcome of the opening match.
“The state of the wicket is a positive for us,” Root told BBC Sport. “We have Graeme Swann, who is obviously a fantastic off-spinner, and it will suit him down the ground.”
Root also admitted he was disappointed not build on his 71 runs after the Yorkshire batsman was dismissed by Tim Southee, ending a 123-run partnership with Trott.
“I was very disappointed not to kick on and after giving them a sniff tonight, we’re quite down about it,” Root told Sky Sport.
“But we have an opportunity to get going tomorrow, Belly battling for us with Finny, hopefully we can get a few more on the board.
“It’s quite a slow pitch and you’ve got to really work hard to start with and get going really.
“I felt all right, you just look to play on instinct and I was lucky to get a few balls in nice scoring areas and just try to make the most of it.”