Mark Taylor criticises Joe Root’s management of Jack Leach in first Ashes Test

Cricket

Former Australian captain Mark Taylor has criticised England captain Joe Root‘s management of under-fire spinner Jack Leach in the Ashes opener.

Leach was dismantled in Australia’s first innings, hit for 102 runs off his 13 overs and did not bowl in Australia’s brief second innings run chase.

With the 30-year-old’s spot in doubt for the second Test in Adelaide, Taylor said Root was outdone by Australian captain Pat Cummins in terms of managing their respective attacks.

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“Joe Root tends to use his spinners last,” Taylor told Wide World of Sports’ Outside The Rope.

“He tends to say, ‘Okay, I’ve tried one-two-three quicks, I’ve gone back to my first quick once, Jack, I better throw you the ball’, which is not the way to use a spin bowler.

“I was very impressed with Pat at times [with] the way he got Nathan Lyon into the game in that second innings.

“He got him on at 1-20 odd I think against Malan, the left-hander. Even though it didn’t work, he got Lyon on when there was a game to be won, not a time for the game to be lost.”

Taylor’s comments came after Root himself took some blame for Leach’s performance after Australia’s nine-wicket win in Brisbane.

“I’ve probably given him too aggressive fields too early, not letting him settle in and giving him a bit more of a chance early on,” he said.

“Jack’s a fine spinner. He’s shown over the 20-odd Test matches that he’s played what an instrumental part he can play within this team, and I’m sure he’ll play a big part in this series moving forward.”

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