Root: We know we've been underperforming

England

Batsman Joe Root implored England to show some fight, come the fifth and final day of the second Ashes Test at the Adelaide Oval on Monday.

Batsman Joe Root implored England to show some fight, come the fifth and final day of the second Ashes Test at the Adelaide Oval on Monday.

Sunday saw Australia declare on 132 for three overnight, after which the tourists slipped to 247 for six – still a hefty 283 runs shy of a daunting victory target.

Root top-scored en route to a fine 87, while the counterattacking Kevin Pietersen offered solid support with a complementary 53. Wicketkeeper-batsman Matt Prior and all-rounders Ben Stokes and Stuart Broad later continued the defiance with an unbeaten 31, 28 and 22 not out respectively.

"As a team we know we've been underperforming – that's quite evident with the scores we've got – and we're just going to have to make sure we keep fronting up and that we keep trying to challenge ourselves in practice and when we get out there make sure we get in a scrap and do our country proud," said Root.

"We were all very prepared and we knew the declaration was going to happen at some point, so I'm sure the rest of the lads had their minds in the right place. Going out there we wanted to make sure we got off to a good start and get a couple of partnerships together."

The right-handed was promoted to three in the order after the experienced Jonathan Trott left the tour due to a stress-related illness. Root was steely and determined, amassing nine boundaries during a vigil that spanned all of 269 minutes.

"It has been great. Obviously I've only had two innings, a bad shot in the first innings – which I try not to talk about too much – but hopefully I can try and put some scores together and try to cement that spot," he added.

"We're in a scrap, we knew that and we knew we'd have to come out fighting and that's what I was trying to do, fight for as long as I could and stay out there for as long as possible. I had to drag myself off. Obviously I was very disappointed. I just wanted to try to do as best a job as I could for England."

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