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Dealing with Ashwin and Jadeja will be a great challenge: Jonny Bairstow

Jonny Bairstow
Jonny Bairstow. (Photo Source: BCCI)

The India and England limited-overs teams are ready to face off in the ODI and T20I series. Things will kick off at the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) Stadium in Pune on January 15 and days ahead of the match both the teams are training in the city to fine tune their game and tactics for the most important game of the series. England were bamboozled by the Indian spinners in the Test series and wicketkeeper-batsman Jonny Bairstow feels they remain the single biggest threat in the second leg of the tour as well.

Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja are both in splendid bowling form and Bairstow agreed that facing them will test their skills. “I have faced Ashwin and Jadeja in Test matches (that preceded the limited over part of the visit). We know they have got skills which are well documented. It’s a great challenge,” he said after the tconclusion of the last warm-up match against India A, that they lost by 6 wickets.

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The England No.6 has been in great form since 2016 and would want to carry on from there in the New Year as well. He also mentioned that when India tour England their batsmen will also be vary of the swinging ball. “I am sure when India come over to England with the white ball swinging their batsmen also look at it as a challenge,”

Their middle-order collapsed in the second warm-up game against India A but Bairstow isn’t worried about that as they scored almost 300 runs in both the matches. “We scored 300 nearly twice. I don’t think it’s of concern. As a side we are doing very well and are scoring 300 regularly. But in a way it was a good thing it (loss) happened here than in Pune. It gives us time to refocus, kick our backside a bit before we go to Pune,” he said.

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He got the most runs for his team in the match with a 64 while others apart from opener Alex Hales and the lower order couldn’t get going. Talking about his knock Bairstow said, “I struck the ball well. I was trying to convert my Test form into one-dayers. Sixty five was pleasing, but disappointing not to go on. When Root is back Root plays (ahead of me).

“My form recently in India in the Test series was pretty good. The two and a half to three months I had spent in Bangladesh and India, playing Tests in these conditions, have helped me immensely,” he said.

With the change in leadership of the India team the visitors aren’t accepting anything different and will be preparing for a similar game despite Virat Kohli leading the team. “It does not change whether it’s Virat or MS. His (Virat’s) captaincy won’t be dissimilar to what MS has done over the years,” he said.

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