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Joe Root hit a match-winning 115 not out in the fourth innings at Lord’s to help England take a 1-0 series lead against New Zealand.

Joe Root, playing his first match since stepping down as England Test captain, hit a match-winning 115 not out in the fourth innings at Lord’s to help the hosts take a 1-0 series lead against New Zealand on Sunday. It was Root’s 26th Test century and also saw him become only the second Englishman to reach 10,000 runs in the longest format of the game. As Root shook the hands of the New Zealand players after hitting the winning runs and walked back up through the hallowed Lord’s pavilion to the dressing room, he got a standing ovation from all present and was met with hugs from elated teammates, led by new England Test skipper Ben Stokes.

“‘Mr Dependable’, Joe Root, stood up. Scoring a hundred and 10,000 runs — what a player and what a man,” Stokes said about his predecessor after his century helped England chase down a target of 277 to win the first Test against New Zealand.

“So I just want to keep batting as long as I can, win as many games for my side. As long as I have got the energy and drive to do it, I will do it,” Root said after the match.

“I could not have wished for a better person to be leading this team. I am gonna be backing and do everything I can to help him become successful,” he said about Stokes.

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Root had stepped down from captaincy following series defeats in Australia and West Indies.

The first Test against New Zealand marked the beginning of Stokes’ stint as captain, as well as that of Brendon McCullum as England’s head coach.

 

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