England’s Jonny Bairstow says Test cricket should be cherished
England’s Jonny Bairstow says losing Test cricket “would be like taking 15s rugby away and just playing sevens”.Updated: Mar 03, 2018 10:28 IST
Jonny Bairstow plans to continue his Test career “for a long time to come” but fears an increasing number of players will turn their back on the red-ball game.
Bairstow’s England team-mates Adil Rashid, Alex Hales and Reece Topley have recently opted to play only white-ball cricket at domestic level.
But there is no danger of Bairstow opting out of the traditional longest form of the game.
“I won’t be going down that route,” the 28-year-old said. “I have put a lot of time and effort into my game in both red and white-ball cricket and I want to play all three formats for England.
“We have to back the decisions of the guys who have made a different choice because if they are not comfortable out there playing red-ball cricket then so be it.
“You can’t force somebody to do something and we wish them all the best but I want to carry on as I am for a long time to come.”
Bairstow considers Test cricket to be the pinnacle of the sport and said it must be protected.
“If you lost Test cricket it would be like taking 15s rugby away and just playing sevens,” he added.
“We’ve got to cherish it and I want to play as many Tests as I can because that’s what you’re remembered for.
“If you look back at the record books you could probably name more guys who have played a hundred Tests than those who have played so many one-day internationals. I grew up wanting to play Test cricket and it still excites me.
“I accept if we are not careful there will be more and more people who take the limited-overs route. You have so many tournaments where people can go off for five weeks and earn a heck of a lot of money with less strain on their bodies.
“Whatever we can do to preserve Test cricket we must do because it is really important.”