Browse News

News by Competition News by Topics News by County Teams News by International Teams

Join TwelfthMan now!

Root class shone through - Prior

We spoke to Matt Prior who made 86 during England's 575 for nine declared on day two

Matt Prior heaped praise on Joe Root after the Yorkshireman registered his first Test double-century on the second day of the Investec series opener against Sri Lanka.

Prior got to watch first-hand for the majority as Root continued his love-affair with Lord's.

The pair combined in a in a record 171-run stand and, while Prior fell short of a century he had craved after his own difficult Ashes winter, Root eased his way to a chanceless unbeaten 200.

In doing so Root surpassed his previous career-best 180, scored on his last Test visit to Lord's against Australia last summer.

"First and foremost Rooty's innings was phenomenal - a double-hundred at the home of cricket, it doesn't get any more special than that," Prior told

"He showed his class and it was a fantastic innings all round.

"Not only him but every player that went in after I got out; the intent we showed was outstanding and gave us a good opportunity to declare when we wanted."

Joe Root paddles Rangana Herath away to fine-leg to bring up his maiden Test double-century against Sri Lanka at Lord's

As soon as Root reached the landmark skipper Alastair Cook called his batsmen in, at 575 for nine.

Hopes of making significant inroads were denied, however, as Sri Lanka made a strong reply, despite spending almost five sessions in the field. With diminutive opener Kaushal Silva, unbeaten on 65, leading the way the tourists reached the close on 140 for one.

Ominously Kumar Sangakkara - already with a Lord's century this summer - was alongside him after coasting untroubled to 32.

"It is a good wicket - Lord's is always a good wicket," Prior said.

"The sun is out and it's pretty flat and they played well.

"When you have got a lot of runs on the board you come out aggressive and attacking and maybe we didn't quite get our lines and lengths quite right.

"We had to give it a go and we come back tomorrow."

Matt Prior was left frustrated as he fell short of a century on his return to the Test team following a tough winter

Chris Jordan claimed the only breakthrough with just his third ball in Test cricket when Dimuth Karunaratne feathered an edge to Prior.

England did have their chances to make further inroads and thought they had Silva, when Prior believed he had held an edge off Stuart Broad.

The replays were inconclusive, with the ball appearing as though it might have bounced just in front, to grant the diminutive Sri Lankan opener a reprieve.

It was a disappointing moment for Prior, but he was able to at least reflect on a good Test so far, after being reinstated following his axing in the winter.

The wicketkeeper reminded all of his class as he hit 86 and helped turn the game England's way alongside Root, although he admits he had to ride his luck after his close lbw call yesterday before he had scored.

"Certainly I would (take 86), especially after the second ball," he said.

"For a year I've had things probably not going my way so it's about time it turned around.

"You have to take the opportunities - I'm happy with 86 but the way the game was poised this morning I was disappointed I didn't go on and get a bigger score."

Investec Test Tracker

Showcases LIVE data analysis, REAL-TIME info-graphics, OPTA in-play stats, Test Series facts 

Follow us on Twitter

Stay up to date and fully informed wherever you are by following ECB_cricket on Twitter

Follow on Facebook

Join the conversation on the official fan community of England cricket on Facebook right now!