Jonny Bairstow’s brilliant century against India at Edgbaston in the first innings of their crucial ICC World Cup 2019 group stage encounter on Sunday (June 30) was crucial in England’s eventual victory, to keep their chances of qualification for the semi-final in their own hands.
Twenty nine year-old Bairstow, who’s 111 off 109 balls propelled England to a score of 337 for 7, said that the home side assessed the conditions well, after what was a slow start.
“Yeah, it was tricky up front. Obviously, winning the toss and batting, they've got a quality bowling attack. I think we were about 40-odd off 10 overs, so it wasn't a blistering start by any means,” Bairstow told the media in the ICC mixed zone after the game.
“But I thought we assessed the conditions really well. It was fantastic to spend time out in the middle. First of all, to get the win to keep us in the competition was great. We go on to Durham now, really excited about potentially putting in another good performance and we know that we've got three games to potentially win the World Cup,” he added.
India were the only unbeaten side in the competition till the game against England, but the home side were clinical on the day across “all three disciplines”, as Bairstow put it.
“Naturally, it was a must-win game. Therefore, we knew what we had to do. We’ve been a bit disappointed to lose the games that we have so far in the competition. But obviously, India at Edgbaston is a massive game. So, to put in a performance like we did today was, I thought, a great all-round performance.
“It was obvious that over the past couple of weeks we have not played our best cricket. This was a game that keeps the World Cup campaign in our own hands rather than needing other people to win," the England opener said.
Bairstow also admitted in the post-match press conference that the past week has been difficult, following a spat with ex-England captain Michael Vaughan over comments questioning whether some people are truly behind England in their bid for a success on home soil.
Captain Eoin Morgan had said that getting “fired up” suite Bairstow, but the batsman joked about it, saying, “I’m not saying I want everyone to come out abusing me, not by any means.
“I think there are different ways to look at it. Along the way, people have questioned techniques, conditions and other things. It is important to react to different scenarios and circumstances and work out how you can play your best.
“You go out every time with the intention of scoring a hundred. Sometimes it comes off, sometimes you nick one behind and sometimes the edge goes for four and you’re up and running.”