England Test skipper Joe Root on Tuesday said that all-rounder Moeen Ali has the ability to win games for his side with both the bat and ball in hand. Root's comments came as Moeen Ali was drafted into the England squad for the upcoming second Test against India, beginning Thursday at the Lord's Cricket Ground.
"Just to go out there and be Moeen Ali," Root said of his returning team-mate. He has the ability to go out there and win games with bat and ball, he's proven that. He plays his best cricket when he is enjoying it and he's full of confidence - it certainly looks that way at the moment, the way he has taken to the Hundred, the way he has led Birmingham Phoenix," Root said in a virtual press conference on Tuesday. "I would happily give him a huge amount of responsibility if he does play because he responds extremely well to that. He is a leader within the dressing room, a great personality, he drags people with him on the field and in the dressing room, so it will be great to have him back around," he added.
The first Test between India and England ended in a draw after rain played spoilsport on the final day of the Test. England coach Chris Silverwood also admitted that batsmen apart from Joe Root need to start contributing more to ease off the pressure on the Three Lions skipper. "We've tried to manage things as best we can over a period of time and I've always been a huge fan of Mo. I think he's a wonderful cricketer across the formats, I think he's a great ambassador for the game, and it's wonderful to see him back in the Test arena, being back in a Test squad," said Root.
"It was a brilliant performance he put in in Chennai and if he gets an opportunity, he'll be desperate to impress and show everyone how good he is in Test cricket as well as white-ball cricket. He's certainly a big contender. We haven't been to the ground yet and we'll look at conditions and weigh things up but he's in a great position to play," he added. (ANI)