Jonny Bairstow tells Trevor Bayliss he has no intention of giving up wicketkeeper gloves for England

JONNY BAIRSTOW has stated categorically he does not want to give up his job as England’s Test wicketkeeper.

And the flame-haired Yorkshireman made his situation abundantly clear during an animated, 20-minute conversation with head coach Trevor Bayliss.

 Jonny Bairstow tells England coach Trevor Bayliss that he does not want to give up his role as England's wicketkeeper

Getty Images
8
Jonny Bairstow tells England coach Trevor Bayliss that he does not want to give up his role as England's wicketkeeper

It was a sign that Bairstow is heading for a clash with Bayliss, captain Joe Root and chief selector Ed Smith if they hand the gloves permanently to Jos Buttler.

Bairstow insisted: “I’m desperate to try to keep my place as the ‘keeper.”

Even though Bairstow practised his wicketkeeping at the Ageas Bowl today, he is almost certain to play as a specialist batsman in the Fourth Test on Thursday, probably coming in at No.4.

During his long chat with Bayliss on the outfield at the Ageas Bowl, Southampton, Bairstow appeared to seek assurances about remaining No.1 Test stumper – but his body language suggested he was given none.

 Bairstow showed signs of frustration during a 20-minute chat with Bayliss

Getty Images
8
Bairstow showed signs of frustration during a 20-minute chat with Bayliss
 Energetic Bairstow is desperate to hold onto his role as England's wicketkeeper

Getty
8
Energetic Bairstow is desperate to hold onto his role as England's wicketkeeper

Bairstow broke his left middle finger during the Third Test when struck by a ball from James Anderson. White ball ‘keeper Buttler took over behind the stumps for 66 overs and then scored his maiden Test century.

After that game at Trent Bridge, Bayliss hinted strongly the move could be permanent but admitted it would require diplomacy to break the news to Bairstow.

Bayliss said then: “That’ll be the hard thing, trying to convince Jonny. It will be a decision taken from the team point of view.

“He’s a world-class batter, we know that, and his keeping has improved over the last couple of years. If we go that way, it would certainly be a deep conversation. Jonny’s a reasonable bloke. We know he wants to keep so there would be a lot of explaining and chatting.”

 Bairstow practised with the gloves on during a training session on Tuesday

Getty Images
8
Bairstow practised with the gloves on during a training session on Tuesday
 Jos Buttler is set to keep wicket for England against India in the Fourth Test

Reuters
8
Jos Buttler is set to keep wicket for England against India in the Fourth Test

There is no doubt that Bayliss, Root and Co will need all their silver-tongued charm to smooth over the situation.

And one can understand why Bairstow would be angry. He is at least as good a ‘keeper as Buttler and has five Test centuries to vice-captain Buttler’s one.

Bairstow was re-invented as a No.5 batsman/wicketkeeper at the start of the summer and is being shunted around the order again only because of the failings of others.

He said: “I’d like to keep my spot as ‘keeper because it’s gone well over the last 38 or 39 Tests since I’ve been doing it for England.

“You put so much hard work into keeping wicket over a long period. It would be like saying, ‘Do you want to give up your laptop and write everything by hand again?’

 Like Bairstow, Ben Stokes is set to be passed fit to play in Southampton

Reuters
8
Like Bairstow, Ben Stokes is set to be passed fit to play in Southampton
 Stokes, Buttler and Bairstow warm up for their practice session with a kickabout

Reuters
8
Stokes, Buttler and Bairstow warm up for their practice session with a kickabout

“There were a lot of questions asked early in my career about my keeping. I remember being asked time and again whether I want to do it but, for the last couple of years, I don’t think you’ve mentioned or questioned my keeping once.

“Before that, I’d cop a barrage every other Test and for me that’s a huge feather in my cap, the fact people are not asking questions of my keeping any more.

“If you’re not asking questions, that’s a good thing. I’ve been told that since I was 13 or 14 years old.”

On his finger, Bairstow added: “I wasn’t able to put my hand in my pocket a few days ago…was that a tight Yorkshireman joke, by any chance? The finger is absolutely fine now and I can grip the bat.”

 India skipper Virat Kohli is looking to level the series when the teams meet at the Ageas Bowl

Reuters
8
India skipper Virat Kohli is looking to level the series when the teams meet at the Ageas Bowl

England Cricket star Joe Root backs Alastair Cook to continue international career and prove his doubters wrong

JONNY BAIRSTOW has stated categorically he does not want to give up his job as England’s Test wicketkeeper.