The ‘future’ of a team sport may always be a question of intrigue among its old faithful and invariably the younger breed who are almost there in terms of ‘learning the tricks of the trade’ and who take the futuristic baton forward. The sheer ambition and at times grit and determination drive the ‘to be’ greats of the game forward and hence the spotlight never deters from their young and promising careers.The future of the gentleman’s game has never been a point of scrutiny as it always evolved the way it had to be, mainly due to the newly crowned stalwarts of the game. The Tendulkars, Vivian Richards or even the Richard Hadlees of the world almost pulled the game by its scruff and took it their way when their careers were relatively young. In today’s day and age of the ever evolving game, this breed of cricketers who are at the most 25 years of age is taking the game to another level with their priceless contributions to their respective sides. They are the present and future of today’s Cricket.
1. Joe Root. England
“Joe Root is the symbol of the new England. He’s not a gung-ho stroke maker like Ben Stokes or Jos Buttler, or even Moeen Ali, but there’s never any doubt about his intent when on strike; he’s looking to score at every opportunity. It’s an intent that marks the difference between the average batsman and the best international players” wrote Ian Chappell when this Yorkshire lad played an instrumental role in England regaining the Ashes at home in 2015. Making his debut against India, Root has only grown from strength to strength since that triumphant tour to emerge as the backbone of English batting. The last year saw him amass 2009 runs in tests at a staggering average of almost 63.70, with respect to his career average which is 54.90. Root is indeed a batsman on the rise. Batting higher up the order was to give much-needed impetus to lack-luster English batting in the ODIs as well. Root hit a purple patch in the winter of 2014-15 against the Sri Lankans where he made 367 runs at an average of 73.40, sadly he couldn’t turn the fortunes for his side in the World Cup of 2015 in Australia and New Zealand as England crashed out in the group stages. Joe Root is, however, England’s man for the present and the future, aged just 24, he is ever-growing in stature and the former Number 1 test batsman in the world is all set to become a true symbol of English cricket.