Buttler set to keep wickets in first Test against Sri Lanka

With Jonny Bairstow unlikely to be fully fit for the first Test, Jos Buttler is in line to keep wickets for England against Sri Lanka.

England vice-captain Jos Buttler will keep wickets in the first Test against Sri Lanka.   -  Getty Images

Joe Root revealed Jos Buttler is likely to keep wickets in the first Test against Sri Lanka as England give Jonny Bairstow time to recover from injury.

Bairstow is struggling with an ankle injury and, despite making good progress towards a return, captain Root is reluctant to take a risk with his side's regular Test wicket-keeper.

Ben Foakes has been called up, but vice-captain Buttler, who took on the role against India earlier this year, is instead set to play next week.

On the possibility of Buttler replacing Bairstow, Root said "It's probably the likely scenario.

"But the reason we called Ben up is because he's a high-quality wicketkeeper and gives us another way to balance the side up. It's a nice position to be in.

"Jonny would be a big loss but we've got some great players that can come in and rebalance the team. He's actually made good strides in the last week or so and he's recovered a little bit quicker than we anticipated.

"But we've got to make sure he's fit and ready to go for as long as possible and not just play one Test and then miss a huge chunk of an important winter."