In Brief

Joe Root poised to replace Alastair Cook as England captain

Yorkshire batsman became a father at the weekend but could soon take on more responsibilities

The life of England cricketer Joe Root is about to become a lot more hectic after he became a father for the first time at the weekend. But that's not the only new responsibility facing the Yorkshire batsman, who could also be named as Alastair Cook's successor as Test captain in the next few days.

Having witnessed the birth of his son Alfred on Saturday, Root will fly out to India to rejoin the England limited overs squad on Wednesday ahead of three one-day internationals and three Twenty20 matches.

By the time he gets home he could well have been appointed captain of the England Test team, with current skipper Cook set for talks with Andrew Strauss over his future following the 4-0 Test series defeat at the end of last year.

"Cook has been mulling over his future... and sources have indicated he is ready to walk away from the job after four years and 59 matches in charge," says the Daily Telegraph. "Root is the only candidate to take over, with Ben Stokes almost certain to be appointed his deputy, and lead England's Ashes campaign in Australia later this year."

Cook, who is now 32, "looked exhausted by the job at the end of seven Tests in Asia" says the Telegraph, which claims his departure will be confirmed this week.

However, things may not be so clear-cut, says the London Evening Standard. Cook "is keeping his thoughts so private that not even key figures in the team know which way he will go", says the paper.

There are also concerns over his replacement's workload. "Root is the only realistic candidate to take over from Cook but it is thought there are concerns within the squad about the possible burden he would have to carry," says the Standard.

"As well as potentially leading the Test side, Root is also their prize wicket. Furthermore, he is a key man in both the 50-over and Twenty20 sides. If England are to win the Champions Trophy on home soil later this year, which would be their first global trophy in 50-over cricket, they need Root at his best."

That has prompted current one-day captain Eoin Morgan to state that Root is "first on the list to be rested if there is an opportunity". He is, however, expected to play all six matches in India.

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