Ashes 2021-22: Joe Root Refers Jos Buttler’s Hit-Wicket on Final Day of 2nd Test as Heartbreaking

The second Ashes Test ended in a nightmare for England as they succumbed to a 275-run defeat at the hands of arch-rivals Australia in Adelaide. The hosts overcame an epic battle from Jos Buttler in the final session of the day-night Test at Adelaide Oval, as the wicketkeeper-batter’s rearguard was not enough to save them. Australia managed to bundle out the visitors for 192 to win the second Test by 275 runs and take a 2-0 lead in the five-match series.

In the just-concluded Adelaide Test, England took the game further than many had expected, largely through the efforts of Buttler’s epic 26 from 207 balls innings to save the Test match for his side. Australia needed six wickets on the final day to wrap things up, but the wicketkeeper-batter not only endured over 200 balls with impeccable grit and determination, he also put up a 61-run stand in 31 overs to help his side stay afloat. However, the England deputy’s defiant knock ended in a slightly bizarre fashion, as he literally stepped onto his off stump to be out hit wicket.

Buttler’s 258-minute marathon which deserved a better end than a hit-wicket, earned him accolades from all around, including from his captain Joe Root, who referred to the hit-wicket as “heartbreaking”. Speaking to BT Sports in a post-match interview, Root said, “Heartbreaking to see Buttler get out like that, it showed the desire you need out here. His mentality in particular was outstanding,”

“We weren’t brave enough at times to get the ball up there and get them driving. Lessons learnt, we have to be better in the next game,” he added.

Buttler’s brave fight also earned praise from Australia’s stand-in captain Steve Smith. “I think Jos played very well, and played over 200 balls, so it was good resistance along with Woakes and Robinson.” Notably, Buttler made amends for dropping a chance with a low diving catch to get rid of Smith earlier on Day 4 of the Pink Ball Test.

Meanwhile, Root’s captaincy has come under the lens as he now has the most Test defeats (23) as captain, surpassing Alastair Cook’s 22 losses. Eight of the 23 setbacks came in the Ashes, the joint-third-most for an England captain.

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