A lot was said about Jonny Bairstow and his England team before the game and as they say, the best way to answer your critics is with the best of performances and that is what Jonny Bairstow did, making amends on Sunday by playing a knock of 111 in 109 balls to script a 31-run win over India to bring the Three Lions back into the race for the last four. He is one of those members of England’s powerful batting line-up who was yet to pick a hundred in the ICC World Cup 2019.
On the top of it, his controversial remark following the hosts’ two consecutive losses against Sri Lanka and Australia that people were waiting for England to lose made things even worse. The 29-year-old Bairstow matched the 44-year-old record of Dennis Amiss by scoring his first World Cup hundred against India and now, a re-energized England will be looking to beat New Zealand in their final league match in Chester-le-Street on Wednesday to book a semi-final spot. A win there will see Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka crashing out of the World Cup.
“It’s been a little bit frustrating for the guys because we know how well we can play. But today (against India) we were pretty good with the bat, ball and in the field. But there are still things we can improve on against New Zealand,” Bairstow was quoted as saying News18.
“It was the closest to a complete performance we’ve had in the competition,” Bairstow, who had put up a 160-run opening partnership with Jason Roy, said. The duo took the Indian spinners to the cleaners even though the seamers had a comparatively better outing.
The basic principles are the same
Bairstow later revealed that there was an Indian connection to their way of handling the spinners and it is the Indian Premier League (IPL). The hard-hitting batsman made his IPL debut this year for Sunrisers Hyderabad where he gained enough inputs from former India batsman like VVS Laxman, the franchise’s mentor.
“Having been at the IPL with VVS (Laxman) definitely helped (deal with spinners). The basic principles are the same. They bowled well up front and the ball did a bit, a couple of inside edges went for fours. But you capitalise when you can and make the most of it,” he said.
Bairstow was one of the top performers of IPL 2019 by slamming 445 runs from 10 matches at an average of 55 plus and strike-rate of 157 plus. He even hit a hundred and his opening partnership with David Warner set up a great example of Anglo-Australian camaraderie.