By Lawrence Booth for The Mail on Sunday
Published: 08:42 GMT, 1 December 2019 | Updated: 08:43 GMT, 1 December 2019
Rory Burns issued a protective defence of Joe Root after both men made centuries on the third day of the second Test against New Zealand at Seddon Park.
Burns hit 101, while Root finished the day unbeaten on 114, his first Test hundred in 15 innings stretching back to February. And, speaking on behalf of the dressing-room, Burns – touted in some quarters as a future England captain himself – did not miss the chance to back his leader following recent criticism over his form and tactics.
'It's really nice to see the skipper get his runs,' said Burns. 'He's obviously a very good player and a lot of stuff has been said in recent times. Not scoring runs as a batsman might bring other things into the equation, which aren't necessarily true. When he bats like that, everyone's behind him and knows exactly what he can do. It's awesome to see him get them.'
Rory Burns says negativity around Joe Root must end