Joe Root after making a fighting fifty against India on Day 3. (AFP)
Nottingham: England middle-order batsman Joe Root has refused to blame his team's batsmen for the slump in the post-lunch session that saw them collapse from 134 for 1 to 202 for 7 handing India the advantage in the first Test at Nottingham.
The Yorkshire batsman then had to come up with a well-made unbeaten 78 putting on big partnerships with Stuart Broad and James Anderson to rescue his side.
"Our top order is quite good and they can have a perfect day mostly. Today wasn't a perfect day. When you go through a session like that, you need to react quickly and we didn't do that well enough today. So we need to learn from our mistakes and build on that," said Root.
Root added 54 runs for the unbroken last wicket stand with Anderson (23 batting) to deny India a chance to bowl the hosts out on day three.
"Our top nine batsmen have Test hundreds. So they are not out and out specialist bowlers. They pride themselves in the way they can bat and it was great to see shift the pressure back on to India. They also took pressure off me and responded very well to the challenge," he said.
"The tea-break meant that India couldn't carry their momentum forward on this pitch and then Broad came out and played attacking cricket and put the bowlers under pressure.
"Anderson and Liam Plunkett played bravely in the final session then and we were able to frustrate India," he added.
England's position was made tougher with two decisions going against them. Sam Robson (59) and Matt Prior (5) were both given out wrongly by the umpires.
"When you don't have DRS, it is a little frustrating. But you cannot moan about it. Until the ICC makes it mandatory for everyone to use, you cannot do anything about it, so you move on," said the batsman.
The only question that remains now is whether England can save this Test match and get away with a draw with a full two days to play.
"We are not in an ideal situation, but we haven't lost yet. Tomorrow Anderson and I have to keep chipping away at this lead, and the more we do that the more pressure we will put on India and the more we will frustrate them.
"When we do ball after that, we need to come out firing and put them under pressure straight away, anything can happen after that," Root also said.