Joe Root says hostile crowd in first Ashes Test in Brisbane can benefit England against Australia

Joe Root knows very well what to expect from the Australian crowd before Ashes’ opener; The England captain believes his team can use the hostility of the public to give him a push; the first ash test begins in Gabba on Wednesday

England captain Joe Root wants his team to face a partisan atmosphere

Joe Root believes that the hostile environment that awaits England in their first Ashes match in Brisbane can help to unite their side even more as they attempt to retrieve the ballot box behind enemy lines.

Teams traveling around England are routinely greeted fiercely in Australia, nowhere more so than at The Gabba, a 42,000-seat cauldron that has earned the gloomy and affectionate nickname ‘The Gabbatoir’.

That’s where the 2021/22 campaign will kick off on Wednesday, with the first ball set at 10am local time or midnight UK, and the reception for Root’s team is likely to be even fiercer than usual.

Coronavirus travel restrictions mean the loudest elements of the Barmy Army will tune in from home rather than make themselves heard from the stands, with a reduced contingent of around 1,000 Queensland-based expats holding the fort.

And while that means the atmosphere will be very partisan, Root sees an opportunity to build a siege mentality with his teammates.

Australia’s Pat Cummins (right) and Root during the Ashes series launch at The Gabba in Brisbane, Australia.

“It’s an opportunity for us to really stand up and deal with it. It will have to be,” he said. “More than anything, we just need to make sure it doesn’t affect the way we do things on the field. We will embrace it, enjoy the environment, and try to thrive in that type of arena as much as we can.

“It’s hard to tell because the guys who have been here before will never have experienced the fans not being there. We always appreciate the support we get away from home, it’s phenomenal, and I’m sure the Brisbane Barmies will come out.” in force and doing everything possible to support us here at The Gabba. “

The crowd isn’t the only thing England will be looking to overcome this week as they look to shake off an ignominious recent history on the ground.

Root wasn’t even born the last time his country triumphed in the stronghold of Australia in 1986, when Mike Gatting was captain and Stuart Broad’s father Chris led the way. Since then it has been a history of afflictions comprising six
resounding defeats and two draws.

Root’s previous visit as captain four years ago ended with a 10-wicket beating, but he’s eager to break the streak, just as he did when England defeated South Africa in Cape Town last year, his first Newlands win since 1957. .

“(The win) would absolutely prepare us for the rest of the series and it’s a great opportunity,” he said. “This group of players, not long ago, went to Cape Town where we did not win a test for a long period of time and after a performance there we won the series.

Root and Cummins face off in Brisbane on Wednesday

“I feel like we’ve been able to do that all over the world and this is an opportunity to do it here. Obviously, conditions are slightly different than at home, in this particular place with that extra bounce, but we’ve also prepared ourselves.” as we can for that. If we manage it well, we should give a very good account of ourselves and start well. “

England trained on Monday afternoon and again looked at an unusually green field. He is likely to adopt a different tone before new Australia captain Pat Cummins flips the coin, but with more rain forecast during the match, Root is in no rush to follow the home team’s lead by offering his scoresheet.

There are decisions to be made between the bowling group, as well as between Ollie Pope and Jonny Bairstow for the final batting spot, but Root kept his cards close to his chest.

“I don’t like mind games, I’m just not in a position to name our team right now,” he said.

“Fair play they have announced their XI. It doesn’t really change anything for me, we will take care of our business however we want and let you know when we are ready.”

All eyes are on the first Test in Brisbane, a game that will reunite Travis Head and Ollie Robinson after the pair shared a dressing room for Sussex over the summer.

Head has beaten Usman Khawaja to claim the No. 5 spot on the Australia side and knows what to expect from his recent county colleague when they meet in the middle.

“I played a little cricket with Ollie and he’s a great competitor. He plays aggressive, aggressive bowling, and that’s what we expect,” Head said.

“He does it day after day at Hove and we’ve seen him in test cricket as well. He’s someone who has burst onto the scene for them and I think he’s going to adapt really well to the conditions in Australia, so ‘We have to make sure we’re 100% in our game to combat that.

“All of our guys have done research on him, but I have some experience with him, so if they need to, we can talk about it.”

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