Shami on Bairstow: We will target Bairstow’s broken finger, is what the Indian pacer said in a press conference before the fourth Test.
Coming in front of the press ahead of the fourth Test between India and England at The Rose Bowl, Southampton, to represent the Indian side, fast-bowler Mohammad Shami did not hesitate at all, revealing that the Indian fast bowlers will go all-out against Jonny Bairstow’s broken finger, should he is included in the playing eleven.
Bairstow, England’s designated wicket-keeper batsman in the longer format, suffered a blow on the middle finger of his left hand while attempting to collect a James Anderson delivery in the last Test at Trent Bridge, Nottingham. Apart from losing the match by 203 runs, Bairstow’s injury was another concern for the English think tank.
During the press conference, Shami was quoted, “When you see that a batsman has a weakness and he feels uncomfortable in some way, you’d prefer to work on that aspect. It’s not just me – any fast bowler will want to target his weak zone – so we will definitely look at that.”
On the other hand, England have given enough hints at Bairstow playing this match as a specialist batsman with Jos Buttler taking care of the duties behind the stumps. This would also mean a batting promotion for Bairstow who is likely to bat at No. 4 with Ollie Pope being dropped down to No. 5.
Talking about his recovery, Bairstow assured a speedy recovery. “The swelling has gone down. I’m going to try and keep wicket in training this afternoon as well”, he said yesterday.
“You obviously want to play, so If I’m not able to keep wicket then I would like to think I’ll be a specialist batsman. But at the same time I’m desperate to try and keep my place as the wicket-keeper”, he further added.