Bairstow happy to repay captain's faith

Jonny Bairstow was happy to score a valuable knock of 89 for England batting higher than usual, at No. 5, on Day One in Mohali. "The confidence the captain has shown in me, to bat me at No. 5, is really good – and I’d like to think I've repaid that faith today," he said.

Jonny Bairstow featured in fruitful partnerships with Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Chris Woakes to rescue England from early damage.   -  Akhilesh Kumar

For a change, Jonny Bairstow came up the order. As it turned out, he had to bat with the middle and the lower-order batsmen to rescue England from the depths it had plunged into in the first session on the opening day here.

Out for 89 towards the end of the day, the wicketkeeper-batsman reflected on the match-situation with a touch of sadness.

>Report: India on top despite Bairstow-Buttler resistance

“We were disappointed losing those early wickets. It could have been a disastrous day. If we didn’t knuckle down and work hard through that last bit of the morning session, we could have been bowling tonight.

Umesh Yadav comments
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“The pitch is probably played at its best today, and maybe tomorrow, but we’ve also seen some uneven bounce as well – which has probably heightened throughout the day. We’re fighting. We’re in the battle. It’s been a bit of a scrappy day. But we’ve dealt with worse in the past.”

Read: Buttler rues missed opportunity for England

Having justified the captain’s faith of sending him to bat at No. 5, Bairstow remarked, “The confidence the captain has shown in me, to bat me at five, is really good – and I’d like to think I've repaid that faith today.

Candidly, Bairstow was also quick to add, “I was really cheesed off to get out this evening. That hurt me pretty bad because I thought I’d played quite nicely throughout the day. So I was desperately disappointed to get out, especially towards the end of the day, because I thought we’d fought back really well.”

>Slideshow: Day One in pictures

Asked about the verbal send-off Jos Buttler received from Virat Kohli, Bairstow said, “I’ve actually not heard anything. There are a lot of squealing people in the crowds. I couldn’t tell you the exact words that were said. It’s something that’s probably going more out of the game, verbals and things like that. If you go back 10 years it was a bigger part of the game.

“But I think you’ve also got to respect you’ve got guys out there who are very passionate, representing their country in the heat of battle. At some point, there are going to be words said. That’s the nature of professional sport.”

Meanwhile, Umesh Yadav was asked about India’s ordinary fielding and catching on Day One and he said, “Sometimes catches are dropped, but this is cricket. Sometimes your teammates take good catches, too.”

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