Cricket
Ben Stokes extends olive branch to ‘integral and important’ Jonny Bairstow

Ben Stokes extends olive branch to ‘integral and important’ Jonny Bairstow

England skipper Ben Stokes is counting on Jonny Bairstow to be an 'important and integral' player for the side ahead of IND vs ENG 4th Test

England skipper Ben Stokes is backing Jonny Bairstow despite his below-par performance in IND vs ENG series. Stokes’ support comes ahead of the 4th Test at Ranchi. Bairstow has failed to fire so far, flopping on all occasions in the first three Tests.

IND vs ENG: Bairstow gets lifeline from Stokes

He is an important player, integral player. Looked good every time he was in the middle,” Ben Stokes said in the pre-match press conference.

Playing as a specialist batter, Bairstow has endured a woeful run in the ongoing five-match series. He is averaging 17.00 having registered scores of 0, 4, 25, 26, 37 and 10 in six innings.

England coach backs Bairstow

England head coach Brendon McCullum is keen to lend his support to the 34-year old. “I don’t have concerns over him. I’m not blind but he’s done so well for us and he’s had such an impactful career,” McCullum said.

“We know a top-quality Jonny Bairstow is as good as anyone in any conditions so we’ve got to keep on giving him confidence and block out a lot of the external noise. I’m sure Jonny will come good,” McCullum adds.

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