Jonny Bairstow has accused Australia of setting a bad example for young people through their controversial defeat at Lord’s, doubling down on England’s criticism of the sacking.
In a fiery addendum to his unbeaten 99 game at Old Trafford on Friday, Bairstow put the blowtorch to fire at critics who questioned the 33-year-old’s place in the England team – and had a few apt words for Australia’s Josh Hazlewood.
He also revealed how difficult it was coming back from a broken leg and dislocated ankle this Ashes summer and said surgeons had warned he might never be able to walk again.
But he saved his most apt reflections for Australia, speaking for the first time since England accused the tourists of going against the spirit of cricket by overtaking Bairstow as they wandered out of his goal circle.
Fast Australian Josh Hazlewood prays the rain would ruin the rest of Test 4 and give Australia the series win
Bairstow scored an unbeaten 99, setting England up for victory should the rain fail to materialize
“The way we’ve played this game and we’ve played it for the last 18 months is something we’re very proud of,” Bairstow said.
“It wasn’t the way I wanted to be down at Lord’s.”
“It’s an integral part of the game now.” We’ve seen it on other occasions.
“I’ve even heard it’s happening in club cricket now.” That’s not necessarily what you want to hear.
Bairstow questioned the Australians’ confidence after hearing Hazlewood’s comments about the hope of rain
“The example for me is when you see young kids coming up. You wanna play the game and play it like I’ve always played it, you play hard, you play it fair.
“And another day it doesn’t happen.”
Australia have since regularly defended the stumping, urging that it was within the rules and Bairstow should blame himself for being careless with his wicket.
Bairstow’s comments could be seen as hypocritical after footage from a county cricket match showed he also struck a controversial bat.
A clip tweeted by popular sports media account Jomboy shows Nottinghamshire batsman Samit Patel making a throw during a game against Yorkshire.
Bairstow is seen overpowering a batter with a kick in the split second before he came out of his circle, which bore striking resemblances to his kick at Lord’s
Bairstow stands behind the stumps and removes the stirrups while Patel has his foot in the air in a split second.
“That’s very, very clever of Jonny Bairstow,” said the commentator.
The comments came after Bairstow hit 99 balls from 81 on day three of the fourth Test to snatch the game from Australia and help England to 592 in their first innings.
Australia finished 4-113 in the second inning and needed 162 more runs to put England back at bat. Hazlewood said the side are hoping the rain will save them from what appears to be certain defeat.
“It’s obviously a prediction, and predictions are subject to change,” Hazlewood said.
“Rain and light play a big part in cricket, and always have.”
“So yeah, it would be great to lose a few overs here and there and make it a little bit easier for us to keep going.” That’s pretty obvious.’
Bairstow hit back when he questioned the tourists’ confidence after hearing about Hazlewood’s remarks.
“Obviously we’re very proud of the way we’ve played the game and have played for the past 18 months,” he said.
“If that’s the comments coming through, then the weather is the weather.” I’m not (veteran British weatherman) Michael Fish.’
Bairstow looks amused as he is extradited at Lord’s following the controversial stumpping of Australia’s Alex Carey (green gloves) while Cam Green looks on
Bairstow also angered reporters for not acknowledging his efforts to bounce back from injury after failing to keep the wicket consistently in previous years.
“Retaining after three years of not keeping is one of those things that takes a while, regardless of the ankle,” Bairstow said.
“That’s part of it.”
“It would be like taking a break for three years and then coming back and writing at the same level as you every day.”