The preparations for the ultimate showdown, The Ashes has begun in Brisbane, as both the teams prepare to knock out each other when the first Test gets underway.
Ahead of the first Test, England’s Jonny Bairstow spoke about a few things in a small airport press conference which included some words about the weather and underfire Ben Stokes.
Bairstow was a part of the England squad which faced humiliation as a result of a 5-0 defeat at the hands of Australia in the 2013/14 Ashes series. But this time the wicketkeeper-batsman is determined to hunt down the Aussies, and as he chose three objectives to define his team’s current mood.
‘Content, relaxed, excited … we are raring to go. We’ve been to the rodeo for the last couple of nights, and it was fantastic.’
The 28-year-old also praised Australia and its atmosphere and seemed to be enjoying every bit of it.
‘It’s a fantastic place to be, and if you can’t enjoy and embrace the country, then there’s something wrong with you.’
‘The cricket that comes with it is an amazing spectacle because it’s not just England and Australia – it’s a worldwide event.’
Speaking about the weather, Bairstow hoped the rain doesn’t ruin what is going to be a cracker of a match.
‘I’m used to it, being from Leeds!’ ‘If it rains it rains. That’s something we can’t control.’
Bairstow is also hopeful Ben Stokes would be able to take the field at the Gabba but says to have no idea about his situation right now.
He believes that it is important for a high profile player like Stokes to take the field for the series to live up to the expectations.
‘It would be amazing if Stokesy comes out. But, we don’t know what’s going on at the moment – it’s completely out of our hands.’
‘We hope it’s resolved sooner rather than later because we want the best cricketers playing in the Ashes. That’s the series we want. We don’t want people not playing and the standard going down because of that.’
At the same time, Bairstow is confident that his team is fully ready and motivated to begin the battle on Thursday.
‘(But) whether Ben comes over or not, the 11 guys who take the field at the Gabba on Thursday will be very motivated.’
Also Read: (Ashes 2017/18: Three Key Player Battles)