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Root urges England's batsmen to 'find a way'

Omnisport
NEWS
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277   //    27 May 2018, 18:47 IST
Joe Root - cropped
Joe Root after England's loss to Pakistan

England captain Joe Root wants his players to be smarter after they slumped to a nine-wicket loss to Pakistan in the first Test at Lord's. 

The hosts were bowled out for 184 and 242, Pakistan posting 363 for their first innings and then cruising to victory early on day four by chasing down a target of 64 for the loss of just one wicket.

England defeated South Africa and West Indies at home last year, but were outclassed by Australia in the Ashes and also lost a two-match series to New Zealand in March.

And Root knows considerable improvement is required ahead of the second Test against Pakistan at Headingley, with a five-match series against India to follow in August and September. 

"Not good enough," was the captain's blunt assessment during a post-match presentation at Lord's.

"We were out-performed in all three departments. We needed more runs in the first innings. 

"I think we did some really good work leading into the game, making sure we were ready, but we just didn't follow through. 

"We played some poor shots, gave some wickets away. You can't afford to do that. 

"As a batting group we have to find a way. You have to read the game, absorbing a bit a pressure, getting through tricky periods. 

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"We have to be a bit smarter. It's a difficult pill to swallow. 

"We have to be better. I'm sure we can bounce back and I'm sure we can do that."

Pakistan's skipper Sarfraz Ahmed paid tribute to the efforts of his side, and highlighted the benefits of playing a lone Test against Ireland earlier this month as preparation. 

"I'm very proud of my team, the way the young players produced their talent," he said.

"When we came here we were very inexperienced but we were very confident. We have a very good bowling side. 

"Our coaching staff worked really hard, told us to pitch it up. 

"The way the bowlers did a job for us was great. We worked really hard on our fielding. Our catching was fantastic. 

"The Malahide game was a very tough game, the way we won the match, it was good for us."

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