England 'would be stupid' not to learn from India debacle, says Joe Root
AHMEDABAD – England captain Joe Root said it would be stupid of his team to look for excuses after their 3-1 test defeat in India and hoped that the experience would help them be better prepared for their next trip.
England arrived in India having defeated Sri Lanka 2-0 in their away series, and they won the opening test in Chennai to put their best foot forward to end the domination of Virat Kohli's men at home.
But the hosts regrouped and won the next three matches comprehensively to complete their 13th consecutive test series victory at home.
"The guys have to embrace what's happened. They've to understand and they have to be realistic," Root told reporters on Saturday after England's defeat by an innings and 25 runs.
"We would be stupid to come away from this trip and just say 'It was India, it was extreme conditions, the ball was spinning and skidding on, it was impossible to bat'. That's the wrong attitude.
"The most important thing is we come away from here and we say 'You know what? There are things that we can get better at. Yes, they are world-class spinners, high performers at home in particular. Well we can be better'.
"What can we take away from this trip? I'm going to go away and make sure that if I find myself in this situation down the line, on the next tour, I will be better equipped to deal with that."
Root believed his side were competitive during the series but India "out-skilled" them at crunch moments.
"It was disappointing," said Root, after his side folded in three days in the fourth and final test.
"Credit does have to go to India. Again they've out-skilled us. They batted on that wicket very well, showed us how to bat on that wicket. And similarly today with the ball they were excellent."
England rigidly stuck to their rotation policy in India, opting to rest multi-format players at different stages of their tour to help them cope better with the challenges of living in strict bio-secure environments.
They also made errors in team selection by misreading the conditions. Root said the issues would need to be addressed.
"The rotation policy is there to look after the players," Root said. "It was all done with the best interests of the England team, the three formats across the whole year.
"There might have been areas where we could have done things slightly differently. Looking back, that's very easy to say. It's not the ideal scenario. As a captain, you always want all of your players available for selection."