England’s latest tour got off to a bad start as they were swept up to the 147th round on day one and then watched Travis Head’s good century allow the home team to reach 425 response turn.
But the lead was dropped to just 58 on Tuesday night as Malan and Root turned the game around with a solid 159 stand.
Both men will be in the spotlight for centuries as they start Wednesday morning on the 220th for two, with the six Malans behind his captain on the 80th not coming out.
Malan is not in uncharted territory, having scored a fantastic century in Perth four years ago, but he was cut after falling out of form and spent most of his time believing his red-ball career His is over.
He was recalled in the summer for his efforts in limited play, but believes nothing compares to the intensity of a lengthy battle with an old foe.
“I actually said to Rooty when I was in my 40s or 50s and the Barmy Army was singing, ‘I really miss this,'” he said.
“I missed having someone trying to blow my head off all the time, the crowd going and the adrenaline going, fighting the best pitchers going around. Test cricket is the pinnacle.
“To be able to stand out here in a England shirt… I take great pride in doing that. Especially doing it at The Gabba in front of everyone. It’s just really fun.
“You can do well what you want in Twenty20 cricket or over 50, but you will be judged a lot by your Test career at the end of it. For us, the Ashes series is the biggest series on our calendar, so coming here and fighting this really good attack has been very gratifying. ”
Malan was quick to point out that there is a lot of hard work ahead if England are to turn a good game into something more meaningful.
“The job isn’t done yet, just getting 80 doesn’t mean you’ve succeeded, it’s getting a big hundred that changes the game,” he added.
“They were brilliant at closing that door on us. We need to add a good partnership for 100 times to score points across the board and then who knows what might happen? To come in after a day and a half of trying and doing what we’ve done here is great, but that’s only half the job. ”
During his classy knockout, Root surpassed Michael Vaughan’s record of 1,481 test runs in a calendar year for England and, with two more games before the end of 2022, he has a lot of time to top up his total amount.
He will likely trade that honor for 14 more runs on Wednesday morning, when he wants to claim his first century on Australian soil in his 10th appearance.
“Joe’s track record speaks for itself, given what he’s done in his career,” Malan said.
“Hitting the ball with him is great because he takes the pressure off you, is always trying to score and seems to find a way to put pressure back on the pitchers. It’s a great sign for us as a team that Joe is playing really well and leading from the front. ”
Australia’s Marnus Labuschagne is not inclined to use Root’s lyrical use of a prolific year, preferring to focus on ending his holiday as soon as possible.
“He hits the ball really well and he’s obviously a nice player in terms of speed and spin, but it’s not my job right now to admire Joe Root’s innings,” he said.
“My job is to find holes in his game and help the team. The Ashes are in the game and we have to keep putting pressure on him. If they continue to hit the ball well and score, we will have to move to plans A, B and C.”
https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/cricket/dawid-malan-england-joe-root-test-cricket-brisbane-b1973510.html Dawid Malan delights again in the heat of the battle of the Ashes as Britain fights back