Former England captain Joe Root scored an unbeaten century to give successor Ben Stokes a winning start to his reign with a five-wicket victory over New Zealand in the first Test at Lord’s on Sunday.
Root stood down as England skipper in April after five years and a record 64 games in charge.
But he remains far and away the team’s best batsman, with his decisive hundred at the ‘Home of Cricket’ paving the way for just England’s second win in 18 Tests as they went 1-0 up in a three-match series against the reigning Test world champions.
England, set 277 to win, finished on 279-5, with Root 115* – his first fourth-innings hundred at this level – after the hosts had slumped to 69-4.
He received excellent support from wicketkeeper Ben Foakes (32*) in an unbroken stand of 120, with the pair denying New Zealand a breakthrough after England resumed Sunday on their overnight 216-5.
Root became just the 14th batsman and only second from England to reach the landmark total of 10,000 career Test runs when he completed his 26th hundred at this level.
Root was also the joint youngest player to score 10,000 Test runs, equalling retired England captain Alastair Cook’s record of 31 years 157 days.
The series continues at Nottingham’s Trent Bridge on Friday.
© Agence France-Presse