Captaincy can take my game to next level - Root

New England captain Joe Root has rejected suggestions his promotion to the role could negatively impact his batting, instead seeing his ascension to skipper as an opportunity to take his game to the next level.

Root was confirmed as the replacement for Alastair Cook on Monday following a rapid rise that has seen the 26-year-old establish himself as one of the best batsman in cricket. 

In 53 Tests, Root has racked up 11 centuries and 27 fifties, averaging 52.80 across 98 innings.

Cook's batting was largely unaffected by the extra responsibility, and Root is not concerned about the prospect of captaincy impinging on his personal contribution.

Instead he is looking to India counterpart Virat Kohli and Australia skipper Steve Smith as examples to follow. Both Kohli and Smith have flourished with the bat as captains and are the only two players above Root in the ICC Test batting rankings.

Root told a media conference: "I see it as a good opportunity to take my game to the next level, you look at other guys that have taken up similar roles like Virat and Steve Smith and they've gone on to bigger and better things and taken their games to the next level, I don't see why I can't look at it in the same light.

"It's a great opportunity to take that added responsibility and motivate me into really looking to get even better. That excites me, along with a lot of other things that come with the role."

Root is, however, hopeful that Cook will be able to return to his best form as an opener free from the burden of the captaincy.

"It's going to be a great help having that experience [of Cook], having that advice just around the dressing room," Root added.

"He's a natural leader within the team, he's got great respect from the lads and I think he's looking forward to the opportunity to just go and bat.

"Hopefully he's going to smash every record going because he's been a great servant to English cricket and obviously been a fantastic captain as well so it would be nice to see him enjoy his batting and go on and break every record going."


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