Ryan Hillback meets Joe Root

MA Contemporary Media student Ryan Hillback recently attended England Cricket Captain Joe Root’s visit to the University. The University is sponsoring Sheffield Collegiate Cricket Club, where Joe Root's stellar career started, as part of plans to increase its presence in the city. 

The audience were bowled over by the new England Cricket Captain Joe Root, who took time out of his busy schedule to visit the University of Wolverhampton. ‌‌

The 80th test captain of the national side was greeted with rapturous applause as he entered the main lecture theatre in Millennium City Building, City Campus.

Root discussed his delight at becoming England’s Test Captain, whilst he also shared tales from his time as a cricketer.

The 26-year-old described how it was “always my dream to become a professional cricketer” and how his family encouraged him to pursue his goal.

The Yorkshire born batsman succeeded Alistair Cook recently, and admitted he received a phone call from director Andrew Strauss whilst he was changing his newborn son’s nappy.

Root, who is currently ranked the third best batsman in the world by the ICC, gave some stirring advice to those who wish to become a cricketer.

He said: “(those who wish to pursue a career in the sport) should keep practising as much as you can. Whether that is in the back garden or at sports clubs, just keep working hard.

“I was fortunate that when I was young, I had parents and grandparents that were extremely supportive – I always had a bat in my hand trying to hit something.

“I want to inspire new young players to take up sport – it offers so many important life skills.”

He signed autographs and took selfies with students after the Q & A.

Then Joe was given a tour of the University, trying out some of the facilities in the lab in the Rosalind Franklin building.

He also teased a change of career as he stepped into the University's Formula style racing car.

Root then enjoyed lunch with a number of guests including members of the Council and the Editor of the Express & Star.

He also sat down for an extended interview with us, and admitted how much he enjoyed the University's hospitality.

Root said: “I’ve had a great day – it’s fantastic to see a place like the this with these kinds of facilities.

“I think it’s important for players to come and do things like this and inspire others to achieve their aims.

“I wish I had gone to university, as I would have enjoyed studying, but in life you have to make sacrifices and I am lucky to be where I am.

“I think I would have studied something like Fine Art – I’m a fan of Andy Warhol and I enjoy his work.”

@RyanHillback 

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