Ton-up Root turns Lanka tide

 13 Jun 2014 - 9:36

England’s Joe Root looks on after playing a shot as a Sri Lankan fielder dives during the first day of the first Test match at Lord’s in London yesterday.

LONDON: Joe Root’s second hundred in as many Lord’s Tests was the cornerstone of England’s recovery on the first day of their series opener with Sri Lanka yesterday.
Root’s 102 not out helped take England to 344 for five at stumps on the first day of the first Test after they’d been struggling at 74 for three when the 23-year-old Yorkshireman walked out to bat.
Root, who made a Test-best 180 against Australia at Lord’s last year, was well supported by Matt Prior (76 not out) in a so-far unbroken sixth-wicket stand of 135.
However, recalled wicketkeeper Prior was fortunate not be out for a second-ball duck before completing just his second 50 in 21 Test innings.
Moeen Ali (48), one of three debutants in a new-look England side following their 5-0 Ashes drubbing in Australia, had previously helped Root steady the ship during a fifth-wicket stand of 89.
“It’s a very slow wicket and hard to time when the ball goes softer,” Root told Sky Sports. “It was a day when you had to scrap.
“There’s nothing that beats Test cricket and the challenge of scoring runs in the first Test of the summer after the winter we had was something that I relished.”                 AFP