Jonny Bairstow Age, Biography, career, stats, networth, Ranking & News

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England's Jonny Bairstow feels the young faces in the squad will help senior players to perform well. Image Courtesy: Getty Images

Ashes 2017/18: Young Faces will Help Raise Teammates Game – Jonny Bairstow

England wicket-keeper batsman Jonny Bairstow feels England’s decision to bring in new faces to the Ashes squad will push the more experienced players in the team to raise their game and take more responsibility.

The 16 members English squad includes three relatively new entrants in Test cricket including Mark Stoneman, Dawid Malan and speedster Jake Ball who have 11 Tests experience between them.

There are three uncapped players in the team as well including fast bowler Craig Overton, Spinner Mason Crane and wicket-keeper Ben Foakes.

“We want people to be coming in and pushing for places in the side for that first test, and if they do that then that will bring out the best in the rest of squad,” Bairstow was quoted as saying by Sky Sports.

“We’ve seen what people pushing for starting places has done to the one-day side and the skill levels have gone in a positive direction because of that.”

The 28-year-old wicket-keeper batsman who has been in great run-scoring form in Tests said the team would be a little nervous but will be in good spirits when they land in Australia for the five-match Test series beginning in Brisbane on 23rd November.

“The Ashes is talked about wherever cricket is played, not just in England and Australia but all around the world,” he added. “The eyes of the world will be on you, and it’s a big series, no question.

“So the guys will come in, yes, with a bit of excitement and a touch of nerves, but also full of enthusiasm and that is going to be what we need.”

Meanwhile, there have been different opinions on the current England team among former English cricketers. While Andrew Flintoff said this is the best England team and guaranteed a result in their favour in the Ashes, Kevin Pietersen lashed out at the current team and said the team looked ‘horrendous.’

Image Courtesy: Getty Images

Ashes 2017/18: England have Got Depth in Batting – Jonny Bairstow

English cricket is in crisis ahead of the upcoming Ashes series especially after the Ben Stokes scandal that happened earlier this week.

There are a lot of doubts over the England team’s performance in the Ashes against Australia away without their star all-rounder. However, England had managed to clinch the ODI series emphatically, as they won the duel with a comprehensive 4-0 series win.

Ben Stokes’ arrest became the major headline despite their win with him getting dismissed from national team until further notice. The Durham all-rounder is very important to the team going into the Ashes, as he could be a valuable fourth seamer and a vital middle-order batsman, with a lot of doubts cast on numerous batting positions.

But Jonny Bairstow, who managed an impressive 141 not out in the final ODI against Windies believes that they are still a strong batting side.

“I’m pretty pleased,” he said. “It’s nice to finish a long summer with some runs and head into the winter with confidence. You wait a long time for a first hundred, and when it comes, you want to capitalise.”

“If the selection doesn’t go your way, you have to bide your time and take the chance when it comes,” added England’s Test wicketkeeper, who appears to have finally secured a regular role in the One-Day side.

The wicketkeeper-batsman believes there are very good batters for the lower-order. Moeen Ali will arguably be the pick as the southpaw is in incredible form at the moment.

Ashes 2017/18: England have Got Depth in Batting - Jonny Bairstow 1
With Moeen Ali in the ranks, Bairstow feels England will bat deep in the upcoming Ashes in Australia. Image Courtesy: Getty Images

“If you actually look at it there’s 50 first-class hundreds at six, seven, eight and nine so I don’t know if you’re classing that as weak,” he said.

“Do please let me know another side in the world that’s got 50 first-class hundreds in those three or four batting positions. That’s been a strength of ours over a period and will continue to be.

“We’re very fortunate to have all-rounders in those positions, whether that be in one-day cricket, T20 cricket or Test cricket.”

England board decided to recall the likes of James Vince and Gary Ballance, who did not convince in their previous opportunities. But Bairstow said it is up to the players to quickly get used to the team environment.

“It takes a period for people to bed into an environment, to bed into a team, to bed into a role and learns a role,” he said, stressing the difficulty of stepping up from county to international cricket.

“We do need to learn quickly because we’ve got a huge series on the horizon,” he added. “It’s something that is going to be tough, but at the same time we’re ready for the challenges that are ahead.”

England will leave for Australia in late October and will play the first Test match of the Ashes on November 23 at Gabba, Brisbane.

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - SEPTEMBER 30: Pole position qualifier Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP celebrates in parc ferme during qualifying for the Malaysia Formula One Grand Prix at Sepang Circuit on September 30, 2017 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

Here’s The Major Sports Round Up From Around The Globe on 30th September

England vs Windies 2017: 5th ODI, Southampton

England defeated the Windies in the fifth ODI at the Ageas Bowl Stadium by nine wickets, courtesy a brilliant hundred from Jonny Bairstow.

The visitors won the toss and decided to bat first scoring 288 runs in 50 overs, which was below par on a batting friendly wicket. England started off the chase with a quick start from their openers, Jason Roy missed his hundred by just four runs, as Miguel Cummins dismissed him. England, with this win, finished off the series unbeaten with four wins, whereas one match was called off due to rain.

India A vs New Zealand A, 2nd Unofficial Test, Vijayawada

After losing the first match, everyone expected the Kiwi team to show some fight against the hosts, but India’s A-side was just too good for the visitors, as they were bundled out for 211 in the first innings.

The spin duo of Karn Sharma and Shahbaz Nadeem managed to take five wickets, and Shardul Thakur was brilliant with the new ball picking up three wickets. For New Zealand A, Collin Munro top-scored with 66 runs while young wicketkeeper-batsman Tim Seifert remained unbeaten on 44.

Pakistan vs Sri Lanka 2017: 1st Test, UAE

Riding on the brilliance of their skipper Dinesh Chandimal, Sri Lanka registered a huge first innings total of 419.

Pakistan in reply lost few wickets early on day-two, but Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq put on a 78-run stand to revive the hosts of early jitters.

South Africa vs Bangladesh 2017: 1st Test, Potchefstroom

After a dominant display with the bat, the Proteas broke Bangladesh’s resilience with the bat by picking up four wickets for 158.

Mahamudullah and Mominul Haque managed to bring Bangladesh back into the game with a 65 run stand at Lunch on day three.

Formula 1: Malaysian Grand Prix, 2017

English racer Lewis Hamilton managed to get the pole position in the qualifying round of the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Finland’s Kimi Raikkonen missed out on the pole position by just .045 of a second. Meanwhile, the Dutchman, Max Verstappen secured the third place.

Premier League 2017/18

In football, the biggest match of English Premier League on Saturday will be Chelsea taking on Manchester City.

Manchester City has replaced Sergio Aguero with Brahim Diaz, while the focus will also be on Chelsea striker, Alvaro Morata who’s fitness will be an issue for the team.

WWE News Update: Mark Henry Announced His Retirement

Known as the world’s strongest man, Mark Henry announced that he has retired from in-ring action. Though the 42-year-old said, he will continue to work backstage with the company.

India vs Australia 2017, Umesh Yadav Wants To Take More Responsibility in ODIs

Indian pace bowler Umesh Yadav who took four wickets in the fourth ODI at Chinnaswamy in Bengaluru has said that he along with Mohammed Shami needs to take more responsibility in ODIs after a less than impressive show with the ball.

Yadav, while addressing the media ahead of the fifth ODI, said they are senior bowlers now, and they must take the responsibility of bowling the death overs.

Dipika Pallikal Losses in Semi-Final of Oracle Netsuite Open

Indian squash star and wife of cricketer Dinesh Karthik, Dipika Pallikal lost to Malaysia’s eight-time world champions Nicol David in the semi-final on Saturday (30th September).

Dipika was out-classed in just 22 minutes in straight sets 11-3, 11-0 and 11-5.

New South Wales Thrashes India A by 7-0 victory

India A women’s team suffered a humiliating loss at the hands of New South Wales’ team in Women’s Australian Hockey League.

In their second appearance of the tournament, India A were no match for the strong NSW team, as they thrashed India A by 7-0 beating.

during the 1st Royal London One Day International match between England and West Indies at Old Trafford on September 19, 2017 in Manchester, England.

ENG vs WI 2017, 1st ODI: The Opportunities are Few and Far Between – Jonny Bairstow

When life gives you chances, make them count like Jonny Bairstow. After being in and out of the Test team, the wicketkeeper-batsman has fully cemented his place and is now looking set to follow the same trajectory in the 50-overs format too.

Despite being one of the most consistent England players in the last couple of years, he did nit get considered for the selection in ODIs, but a much-needed opportunity arrived when Jason Roy got axed for the first One-Day International.

Bairstow fully capitalised on the opportunity, scoring his maiden ODI century to guide England to a comfortable seven-wicket victory over Windies in the first ODI on Tuesday (September 19). The timely century will surely do a world of good for the player who had played just 27 ODIs despite making his debut way back in 2011.

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MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 19: England batsman Jonathan Bairstow celebrates his century during the 1st Royal London One Day International match between England and West Indies at Old Trafford on September 19, 2017, in Manchester, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Speaking after the game, Bairstow admitted he needed to make the opportunity count to carve a place for himself in the settled batting lineup which has scored 300-plus totals on a consistent basis in the last one year or so.

“It seems a long time ago that I made my debut in one-day cricket,” Bairstow told Sky Sports. “There’s been ups and downs. When you get a chance, you try and come in and take your chance, but at the same time, with the strength and depth we’ve got, it’s been so settled for over a year now. The opportunities are few and far between, so when you do get one, it’s important that you do try and take it.”

“We’ve got a serious belief within the side. We didn’t necessarily do ourselves justice in the Champions Trophy but going forward to the World Cup and the rest of this series; we need to rectify that,” Bairstow added.

Meanwhile, England captain Eoin Morgan was delighted over his bowlers’ comeback after they were taken to cleaners by Chris Gayle in the initial stage. Riding on Gayle’s quick start, the visitors had reached 45 for no loss in six overs, but the game turned in the hosts’ favour once Moeen Ali accounted for Evin Lewis and Chris Woakes sent back Gayle in quick succession.

Windies never managed to recover from the setbacks and managed to put up a modest 204 for nine in a 42 overs game.

“I thought we came back really well,” Morgan said. “It didn’t take us that long to adapt to conditions. We went to slower balls and variations and hard into the wicket which normally works here. The bowling unit, in general, put in a really good benchmark for the start of the series. Normally a performance like that is a reaction, so it’s encouraging to start the series like this.”

Morgan’ Windies counterpart, Jason Holder, on the other hand, said the series is still up for grabs and admitted his team needs to improve. The two-time world champions have missed an automatic spot for the next World Cup after the defeat.

ENG vs WI 2017, 1st ODI: The Opportunities are Few and Far Between - Jonny Bairstow 3
during the 1st Royal London One Day International match between England and the West Indies at Old Trafford on September 19, 2017 in Manchester, England.

“The series isn’t over – it’s just one game down. We’ve just to got to focus on this series first” – but he knows his team needs to improve their one-day cricket,” Holder said.

The captain further rued his batsmen’s failure to keep the scoreboard ticking with ones and twos.

“If you’re not getting boundaries, you need to rotate the strike,” said Holder. “In the middle, we got a little stuck. It’s an area we really need to improve on in terms of rotating the strike. It’s been an area of concern for a while now. We are a naturally boundary-hitting team but if the boundaries aren’t coming, we need to find another option.”

Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Eoin Morgan Confirms Jonny Bairstow to Open Innings against Windies in ODI Series Opener

England limited-overs skipper Eoin Morgan in the recent interview revealed wicket-keeper batsman Jonny Bairstow is all set to open the innings with explosive batsman Alex Hales.

However, Jason Roy, who is expected to be, overlooked for the Playing XI in the series opener of the five-match Royal London One-day international series beginning at Old Trafford on Tuesday (September 19).

“We feel that he deserves a chance after waiting in the wings for quite a while now,” Morgan told Sky Sports.

The 31-year-old Dublin-born Morgan has backed Bairstow in a bid to retain his place while adding the latter has a point to prove, to cement his spot in the 50-over competition.

“It is an opportunity to make the opening position his,” Morgan remarked.

Interestingly, the makeshift 27-year-old Durban-born opener Roy had a poor show with the bat after a solid start, in the top-flight cricket.

Roy couldn’t score a fifty in his past nine matches. He was also dismissed on naught in the One-off Twenty20 international at Durham on Saturday (September 16), as visitors in the form of Windies won the match by 21 runs.

Eoin Morgan Confirms Jonny Bairstow to Open Innings against Windies in ODI Series Opener 4
In the T20 fixture at Chester-le-Street, Eoin Morgan managed to score just two. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

(Read Also: Shane Bond To Coach England In First Three Ashes Test)

Earlier, the Yorkshire-born 27-year-old middle-order batsman Bairstow was hopeful to make big into the limited-overs set-up for the Three Lions.

Bairstow was handed over a task to start the proceedings alongside Hales in the ICC Champions Trophy semi-final clash against Pakistan in Cardiff.

Morgan, who is averaging 38.73 in 185 ODIS, revealed the side suffered immensely after failing to make it to the final of Champion Trophy while adding the unit is looking forward to giving their best.

“We felt we weren’t good enough to make the final. There is a little bit of angst there and will to produce a significant performance in this series,” Morgan further added.

In the first semi-final, Bairstow scored 43 off 57 balls, as the hosts lost the all-important clash by eight wickets.

Morgan reiterated they are focusing on taking on one-match after another, as he stressed the home side made a thorough assessment of visiting players including their strength and weakness.

“We have plans for each and every one of their payers, whether we execute the plans or not is down to the skill level we produce on game day,” Morgan concluded.

Pertinently, it will be hosts first 50-over game after June 14 – to face Caribbean side-led by Jason Holder.

While wrapping it up, the Windies need to thump English side 5-0 which is highly unlikely, to be the automatic preference for the World Cup 2019 after leapfrogging Sri Lanka which is currently ranked eighth in ICC rankings.

However, the other scenario is 4-0, as the fifth ODI should end-up on a tie or extract no-result.

Jonny Bairstow Aims to Make Big in ODI Fold for England

England wicket-keeper batsman Jonny Bairstow is hopeful of earning a regular deal while representing his national side owing to the long-run, particularly in the One-day International format.

“I’ve been in and out, one game here and there over a period of time, and at some time it’d be nice to get a decent run,” Bairstow was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

Interestingly, Bairstow was speaking on the event of Royal London which further has been the valuable sponsor for England’s limited-overs cricket reiterated he had enjoyed his keeping.

“I’ve been delighted with my keeping this summer,” Bairstow said.

The 27-year-old Bairstow has vowed to give his best while donning the colours for the Three Lions. Before going into the five-match series, the hosts England will face the Windies in a solitary Twenty20 international fixture on Saturday (September 16).

“Not just one series but a couple of series that you can get your teeth stuck into – into a role, a side and a series,” Bairstow added.

Recently, Bairstow came off a decent performance in the recently concluded ICC Champions Trophy 2017, in a bid to establish himself as a frontrunner for England apart from the Test set-up. The ODI series will kick off on September 19 at Old Trafford, and the final ODI would be played at Rose Bowl on September 29.

“I finished the Champions Trophy opening the batting, which I like to think I’ve done alright. So wherever it is there’s an opportunity, hopefully I’ll get the nod,” Bairstow maintained.

The middle-order batsman has certainly a doubt in place over being a preferred choice, as the player for white-ball cricket, as he has been a reserve choice particularly in the limited-overs format.

“I don’t mind where I play and bat, as long as I’m in that XI,” Bairstow asserted.

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Pertinently, Bairstow’s case has been made strong by the England Cricket Board’s (ECB) selectors for overlooking Sam Billings. Photo Credit: Get Images.

(Read Also: England’s Danielle Wyatt Shuts Down her Trollers in Style)

The promising prospect Bairstow, who had fought hard for his place in the national set-up, is hopeful of getting a direct role in spite being inducted into the squad owing to the replacements.

“I’ve been really happy with it, it’s something I’ve worked very hard on. There was a lot said about it a year ago, and for people not to be talking about it, that’s what you want,” Bairstow further said.

In the recent past, Bairstow has been the second preference as a gloveman’s role while donning the national colours, believes he has come a long way to set a mark with the bat and behind the stumps.

“If I’m keeping in Tests, for 150 overs, instead of 50 or 20 overs, I’d like to think my keeping is up to scratch to keep in one-dayers as well,” Bairstow concluded.

The batsman in the form of Bairstow made his debut in 2011 against India at Cardiff, as has played 45 Tests, 27 One-day Internationals and 22 T20Is. He scored 2824 runs in five-day format followed by 690 in 23 innings of the 50-over format at an average of 25.16. The right-handed batsman smashed three hundred and 17 fifties in Tests followed by five half-centuries in ODIs and two in T20Is.

Jonny Bairstow. Image Courtesy: Getty Images

Jonny Bairstow Sets Lofty Dreams of Becoming the No.1 Test Batsman

England’s wicket-keeper batsman Jonny Bairstow has revealed his lofty goal of becoming the No.1 Test batsman in the world. The free flowing batsman broke into the Top 10 of the latest ICC Test Rankings last month after a string of strong performance which has seen him amass 1039 runs at an impressive average of 43.29.

Though he is still a long way from becoming one of the best, he is surely the best Test wicket-keeper batsman currently.

He is currently sitting pretty at No.7 as per latest ICC Rankings after some good performances against South Africa. He is the 2nd highest ranked English batsman with the 2nd spot being occupied by captain Joe Root.

Meanwhile Aussie captain Steve Smith is sitting pretty at the No.1 position and is leading Root by 50 rating points. Bairstow who is on 772 points is of the opinion that sky is the limit if he can continue his good vein of form.

“Seven is, apparently, now where I also find myself in the ICC world batting rankings, which I’m delighted about,” Bairstow wrote in his column for the Daily Mail.

“Is No.1 feasible? Why not! It’s not something you think about but my aim has always been to work hard to become the best I can possibly be as a batsman and keeper, and if that pushes me even higher in the rankings then I’ll take that.”

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Jonny Bairstow has been one of the most improved batsmen in the England’s Test line-up over the year. Image Courtesy: Getty Images

Bairstow will have a chance to improve his Test Rankings further when the English side meets the Caribbeans ahead of the Ashes later in the year. Despite his dream run, Bairstow has vowed not to be over confident and not get carried away with his recent performances.

“I’m delighted with my form with bat and gloves,” he wrote. “It’s just a question of quietly carrying on and not making too big a deal of it when things are going well – but I must confess I was devastated to get out for 99 at Old Trafford.

“It was like that time at Lord’s against South Africa in 2012 when I fell in the 90s. An extra run shouldn’t really matter that much. It doesn’t mean you have not played well. I’m certainly happier to make 99 than nine or 19, but we all know in cricket that extra run does matter,” Bairstow said.

Bairstow not only provided entertainment on the field but was in action on the balcony too when the keeper added to his highlights by catching a Moeen Ali six on the English team balcony.

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MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – AUGUST 06: England player Jonathan Bairstow raises the ball after taking a catch off a Moeen Ali six shot on the players’ balcony during day three of the 4th Investec Test Match between England and South Africa at Old Trafford on August 6, 2017, in Manchester, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

“I pretty much had to take that extra ‘catch’ on the balcony when Moeen Ali hit one towards us during his fabulous second-innings knock,” he wrote. Everyone else was scarpering back inside. It was just a natural reaction to go and catch the ball, to be honest.

“On a serious note, if it had ricocheted around the balcony it could have hit someone in the face. It’s my job to catch the ball so I just went for it. A good job I caught it, mind because it would probably have gone viral if a ’keeper had dropped it,” Bairstow said.

After a resounding 3-1 series victory against the Proteas, England is all set to host the first ever day night Test on English soil scheduled to start from next Thursday at Edgbaston.

“We are going to have an extra day’s practice with the pink ball ahead of Edgbaston, which will be good because I didn’t get a chance to bat with one in our day-night county match for Yorkshire earlier this season,” Bairstow explained.

“West Indies have come in under the radar to an extent while we’ve been playing South Africa, but we will have a good think about them in the coming days,” Bairstow concluded

England Vs South Africa, 4th Test: Jonny Bairstow Annoyed After Being Dismissed On 99

While there is absolutely no denying that every cricketer wants to have a record by his name, there are some records which no one wants to have by his name and Jonny Bairstow will certainly agree with it at the moment. The wicketkeeper-batsman on Saturday (August 5) became the first England wicketkeeper and only the third overall to be out for 99 when he was trapped in front by Keshav Maharaj on day 2 of the ongoing last Test against South Africa at Old Trafford.

England Vs South Africa, 4th Test: Jonny Bairstow Annoyed After Being Dismissed On 99 8
Credits: Getty

Speaking at the post-day conference, the 27-year old admitted that he was annoyed to miss his fourth Test century by just one run but sounded happy for managing to add 66 runs to his overnight score by forging partnerships with the lower-order batsmen. The right-handed batsman, who added 50 runs with James Anderson for the last wicket, eked out as many as 110 runs with the last four batsmen.

“I’ve joined a pretty special club,” Bairstow said. “I was pretty annoyed but at the same time, if someone had said you’ll get 99 after starting on 33, you’d take it.

I kicked myself as that’s twice now I’ve got out in the 90s against South Africa,” recalled Bairstow who was bowled for 95 by Morne Morkel when South Africa toured England in 2012.

His 99-run knock, nevertheless, has put England in a commanding position as after scoring 362, the hosts have the Proteas reeling at 220 for 9 with James Anderson wreaking havoc. Bowling from the James Anderson England pace spearhead made it a memorable day for himself by dismissing reaping apart South Africa’s batting, finishing the day with figures of 4 for 33.

England Vs South Africa, 4th Test: Jonny Bairstow Annoyed After Being Dismissed On 99 9
Credits: Getty

Bairstow, meanwhile, has been demoted to number seven in the batting order. He had started the series at number five but with England’s decision to drop a bowler for an extra batsman in the last two matches, the wicketkeeper-batsman has moved lower down the order.

Speaking about it, he said:“It’s something that you have to learn how to deal with. It can sometimes be quite difficult, trying to manipulate the strike. You’ve got to have trust in your partner. In any situation, leaving it down to the last ball to get a single off it can be quite tricky.”

The day had another memorable moment for Bairstow as he completed his 100th Test dismissal behind the stumps when he caught Hashim Amla off Toby Roland-Jones. The way he struggled in the early part of his career, Bairstow’s rise has been very impressive and the wicketkeeper is himself a bit surprised to become England’s undisputed number one man behind the stumps.

“If you had said that to me two years ago [the 100 catch mark], I’d have said no chance,” he admitted. “It’s the hard work that I’ve put in and keeping in games of cricket has moved my game on. I’m delighted to achieve that. Hopefully, there’s a couple more hundred in the tank.”

Jonny Bairstow counter attacked his way to 99 (Photo Source: Twitter)

Jonny Bairstow Joins The Minute List Of Wicket Keepers Stranded At 99

Jonny Bairstow took his team to its desired position but eventually finished one short of his personal milestone as luck deserted him when it mattered the most. Resuming at 260/6, England were rocked by a charging spell of Kagiso Rabada that saw them lose two quick wickets – nightwatchman Tony Roland – Jones and Moeen Ali – in short successions.

Bairstow, batting at 33 not out, was now left to deal with the tail enders in order to take the innings ahead which looked tough as the Proteas looked pretty determined to deliver the knock out blows.

No. 9 – Stuart Broad came in and was quickly removed after trying to be aggressive.

But, the real joy of witnessing Test cricket the unfolded slowly with dashes of aggressive stroke making as Bairstow kept switching between farming the strike and playing solid drives to advance toward his fourth test centuries. He aptly acknowledged the sensibility of being the only proper batsman remaining in the batting order in the manner he safeguarded Anderson while in the middle.

Both the batsman were saved on one occasion each, off the bowling of Keshav Maharaj. But, just when the Old Trafford crowd felt that Luck was showering on the last batting duo, misfortune struck.

Standing just one run away from his fourth test century, Bairstow tried in vain to sweep Keshav Maharaj and was dismissed leg before. Kumar Dharamsena chose to go with the bowler’s appeal which was by challenged with the DRS but was upheld.

No. 11, Anderson, stayed unbeaten at 4 not out from 15 balls.

Bairstow majestic efforts saw England go past the desire 350 runs mark and finish at 362. But he himself ended up becoming a part of the very small league of players who have been stranded at 99, joining the likes of Brendon McCullum (versus Sri Lanka in 2005) and MS Dhoni (versus Australia in 2012).

Jonny Bairstow. Image Courtesy: Getty Images

England vs South Africa 2017, 2nd Test: Jonny Bairstow Credits Bowlers For Bouncing Back

England has made a habit of coming up with an ordinary performance after a superlative one. In the last one year or so, the series against Pakistan, Bangladesh and India have witnessed the English side’s inconsistency and it was on full display on the opening day of the second Test against South Africa before the bowlers led the fightback.

James Anderson, who had taken an astonishing 53 wickets in just eight Tests at Trent Bridge prior to the match, gave the Three Lions the perfect start by sending back Dean Elgar for only six. A 48-run stand between Heino Kuhn and Hashim Amla then steadied the ship before a century-plus stand between the latter and Quinton de Kock set the Proteas on course to grab the honours.

However, two wickets a piece from Stuart Broad and Ben Stokes helped England to claw their way back into the game, as the visitors found themselves reeling at 235 for six from 179 for two. Vernon Philander (54*) and Chris Morris (34*) then shared an unbeaten partnership of 74 runs to even things at the end of the day.

England vs South Africa 2017, 2nd Test: Jonny Bairstow Credits Bowlers For Bouncing Back 10
Image credits: Getty

Speaking after the day’s play, England batsman Jonny Bairstow admitted that the day could have totally gone South Africa’s way if Broad and Stokes had not managed to pick up those wickets after tea.

“It could have been quite heavily in their favour if we hadn’t got those four wickets in the last session so credit to the way that our bowlers bounced back,” Bairstow said. “We would have chosen to bowl first but they applied themselves well and got stuck in.

England vs South Africa 2017, 2nd Test: Jonny Bairstow Credits Bowlers For Bouncing Back 11
Image credits: Getty

“No matter what you do you’ve got to try and do it well. They chose to bat and I thought they played well first up, counteracted the ball when there was any movement. We could have done perhaps better but you’re always looking for little things, bits of luck and a few that dropped short in the outfield. It could have been a different day,” he added.

Broad and Anderson walked into the match with brilliant records on the ground. While Anderson is the highest Test wicket-taker at Trent Bridge, Broad had ripped apart Australia with a sensational spell of eight for 15 a couple of years ago. And England’s pace spearheads began in the same manner but did not enjoy much luck. Both the pacers bowled in tandem and managed to keep South Africa under pressure during the majority of the 39 overs they shared.

“To bowl 20 overs each in a day is a tough task and I thought they were unlucky,” said Bairstow. “Especially early on, there were balls that beat the outside edge consistently and later on, the skill to make the ball move with a 65-70 over old ball was still there. On another day they could have got two, three, four wickets early on and it would have been a completely different day.”

“You could see in that spell – not the with the (second) new ball but the one before – that he was attacking the crease,” said Bairstow. “His rhythm was real nice. The pitch reacts differently for different bowlers. We saw some scooting low, we saw some carrying through so I don’t think that’s a fair reflection of how someone’s bowling.”