Joe Root 'Proud' Despite England's Series Loss Against New Zealand
The second Test match between New Zealand and England at Hamilton ended in a draw, and that meant the hosts won the two-match series 1-0. But despite the loss, there were a few positives for the English camp, and skipper Joe Root was ‘proud’ of the way his side played.
"We got ourselves in a position in that first game where we could have gone on and put them under huge amounts of pressure, made a big first-innings score just like we did this week,” Root told BBC’s Test Match Special.
"It could have looked very different. But one thing I'm really proud of is the way we learnt the lessons quickly from that."
The going has been tough for the England side, who did not manage to win even one Test series this year for the first time since 1999. Now they travel next to South Africa for a four-match series that commences on December 26.
"We are a side that wants to learn quite quickly and wants to become quite resilient in these conditions," Root said.
"We want to become a much harder side to beat, first and foremost, and then go on and win games when it does get flat and hard.
"Similarly, we want to go and make really big totals and put sides under pressure."
Root also had words of encouragement for Jofra Archer, who did not have a great tour and picked up only two wickets in three innings.
"I think he'll learn a huge amount from this, I really do," Root said. "He's obviously an extremely exciting talent and he's got so much to offer Test cricket and this team and I'm sure it won't be long till we see him tear it up again.
"I think he's found out there are a number of ways you've got to be able to operate and you've got to show real resilience sometimes when it does get quite flat and keep putting in time and time again, which he did.
"He showed a great amount of variety in trying to take wickets and produce an opportunity. Bowling with no front arm, bowling his knuckle balls, a couple of leg-cutters and a quick bouncer every now and again to change the pace. It shows he's got all the skills that are there, it's now just putting it all together. I'm sure he'll learn very quickly and I'm pretty confident we'll get the best out of him soon."