Billy hopes to follow his brother’s Root as Tykes face leaders

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Sheffield’s Billy Root did his hopes of a professional contract no harm with a stylish 85 for Leicestershire’s second team earlier this week.

Billy, the younger brother of England star Joe, is currently signed to the MCC’s Young Cricketers, based at Lord’s.

Since his departure from Yorkshire, he has trialled at a number of clubs on the county circuit - the latest of which, Leicestershire, gave him a chance on Monday in a Second Eleven T20 game against Essex, at Hinckley Town CC.

The left-handed batsman made the headlines recently when he was 12th man at Lord’s for the Test match between England and New Zealand.

His older brother Joe, of course, was playing for England, and the two brothers were on the field together when the home side secured the victory.

Joe and Billy made a surprise return to Sheffield Collegiate, the club where they both learned their cricket, on Sunday when the Abbeydale Park club hosted an under-9s tournament.

Joe is again expected to be part of the England side for their day/night ICC Champions Trophy game against Sri Lanka at the Kennington Oval today.

Yorkshire aren’t doing too badly without their young opener, however, and kicked off their County Championship game against top team Sussex yesterday third in the Division One table, just five points behind the leaders.

Yorkshire’s only defeat in four-day competition this season came against Sussex on the opening day.

“After a poor start I think we’ve played some wonderful cricket,” head coach Jason Gillespie said.

“We’ve been in a position to win the matches and I think that’s the result of the way we’ve gone out to bat and our aggressive bowling.

“Our fielding’s been pretty good but our challenge is to maintain these things and keep our standards as high as they possibly can be.”