Root praises 'underappreciated' Moeen Ali's Test contributions

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28 Sep 2021 | 01:01 PM
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Root praises 'underappreciated' Moeen Ali's Test contributions

England skipper Joe Root lauded all-rounder Moeen Ali who announced his Test retirement

England's Test skipper Joe Root hailed spin-bowling all-rounder Moeen Ali as a role model and a great presence in the dressing room, saying that his Test retirement is a big loss for the team.

Ali, who made his Test debut in 2014, played 64 matches for England, scoring 2,914 runs and claimed 195 wickets.

"First and foremost, it goes without saying that Mo's (Moeen) career speaks for itself and what he has achieved," Root he told ESPNcricinfo.

"He's done some wonderful things in Test cricket. He's been one of the great guys to play alongside. I've thoroughly enjoyed sharing that dressing room with him and we've had so many wonderful memories, on the field and off the field.

"He's been a wonderful role model. I really hope that, off the back of what he has done and achieved at Test cricket, there will be so many young boys and girls out there wanting to follow in his footsteps because he's done fabulous things..."

Root said that he had spoken to Ali over the week and felt that the 34-year old's absence will be huge in the dressing room.

"I've spoken to him in the past week and the way he has dealt with it has been, as you'd expect, first-class. But he'll be a huge loss to the group for so many different reasons," Root said.

"At times he has been under-appreciated. Not within the dressing room but outside of that. He'll be a huge loss."

Ali last played in the fourth Test against India at the Oval. Root also reflected on Ali being dropped for the first two Tests against India, wishing things could've been done differently.

"You look at the amount of games he has affected, the amount of special moments he has had on a cricket field in the Test match format has been exceptional.

"I'll certainly remember a lot of amazing things that he has achieved. Of course, there might have been times we could have done things slightly differently, but I could say that about a lot of things."

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