Mumbai: Joe Root, chief architect of England’s record run chase against South Africa, feels it wasn’t a complete performance from the English team but said the two-wicket win in the ICC World T20 match will give them a massive confidence boost. (World Twenty20: Sensational Joe Root Helps England Win in Record Chase Against South Africa)
After conceding 229 runs bowling first, England rode on Root’s 83 in 44 balls and quick-fire knocks by openers Jason Roy (43 off 16) and Alex Hales (17 off 7) to script the highest runchase in the World T20.
“The best thing about today is that it wasn’t our complete performance as we didn’t play our absolutely best and we can still win a game chasing down a total like that. So that will give the squad a massive confidence going further into the tournament, regardless be it with bat or ball. Hopefully this will give us a momentum to go through the group stages,” Root told reporters at the post match conference.
“That was a very positive result for us. Obviously in the half way stage we were up against it but the fact that we can pull off performances like that with the bat will give us a lot of confidence as we go further in the group stages and in the tournament as well,” said the player of the match.
The 25-year-old attributed the 48-run opening stand between Roy and Hales as a key factor in the win saying a good start was needed for them to emerge victorious.
“We have always got a chance in this format of the game with the quality of players we got in our dressing room. We knew that we have depth in our batting and if we get a good start, which we did, we are more than capable of winning that game. Without that start that would have been difficult for us, the guys did a fantastic job and were ahead of the game and made batting in the middle overs a little bit easy.
“Guys were calm under pressure and did held their nerves which is very important in this format of the game and this environment and which has given us a lot of confidence for the rest of it (the tournament),” he said.
Talking about the role of spinners, Root said, “Spinners have been crucial for our success for a number of months now, they are developing all the time and gaining experience all the time and they are a big threat in ODI cricket and T20 cricket. That will give them a lot of confidence to take that forward into the next group game.”
Root said it was West Indies opener Chris Gayle’s unbeaten century against his team on Wednesday that showed that anything was possible in these conditions.
“Gayle’s innings showed that anything is possible, in these conditions and in a wicket like that. Also knowing that, you have lot of strength in batting behind you, gives you a lot of confidence and license to be risky. It is good that all came off today and we managed to get over the line,” he said.