Bayliss would prefer Root rise

11 September 2017 16:59:30 GMTPlus10

England head coach Trevor Bayliss has admitted that he would prefer to see captain Joe Root bat at number three in the upcoming Ashes series against Australia.

Root currently occupies the number four slot in the Three Lions batting line-up, with Essex right-hander Tom Westley the latest player trying to impress in the pivotal role at number three.

I would always have Root at No.3.

Trevor Bayliss

However, with Westley having yet to make the position his own, Bayliss has told reporters that he would personally like to see Root move up a place, as he is without doubt England's leading batsman.

He commented: "I would always have Root at No.3. He is by far our best player and personally I believe that is where your best player should be. I think he will end up at No.3 at some stage in the future.

"He has done well at four and he feels comfortable at four. If that's where your best player feels comfortable and is scoring runs at number four then that's the other side of the argument: why change?

"So whether it's a three or a four, we still have to find someone who can do the job."

During his career to date, Root has batted at number three in 16 of his 60 Test matches, making 1,224 runs at an average of 45.33.

His record at four stands at 1,686 runs in 20 Tests, at an average of 54.38, including four centuries and 13 half-centuries in 33 innings.

England can be backed at 5/2 to win the Ashes series outright and are 14/1 to do so by a 2-1 winning margin, while the tourists are 11/8 to retain the little urn.

Before heading Down Under for the Ashes, England take on the West Indies in one T20 international and five ODIs.

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