Wicket-keeper batsman Jonny Bairstow believes the conditions in England would be unpredictable for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, beginning May 30. “We do not know what conditions, we do not know what weather England’s going to have in store for us. Sometimes it can be overcast, sometimes it can be nice and sunny. The pitch can change,” ESPNcricinfo quoted Bairstow, as saying.
The 29-year-old, who played for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League (IPL), scored 445 runs in 10 games, including a 52-ball century against Royal Challengers Bangalore. Following the performances, Bairstow said he is confident of playing spin and tackle sub-continental teams.
“You have got Afghanistan that will probably bowl 30-40 overs of spin. And you do not know in England – it is not like in India, where if you see a pitch is dry, then it is definitely going to turn. Sometimes it can be a bit softer in England and a bit tacky, so it can turn as well. If they can potentially limit the team to a score, then you have people like (Mohammad) Shahzad go and whack it,” Bairstow said.
England is considered to be one of the favourites to lift the World Cup trophy. However, Bairstow pointed out England’s performance in the recent ODI series against West Indies in February-March, which was tied at 2-2 and hoped to play better cricket going into the marquee event.
“Leading into the World Cup, and leading into the latter end of this (IPL) tournament, you go about the games as if you have got to win every game because you want to get into that top four. We have not necessarily played our best cricket in a few of the games, which has meant that we have got to win some games in this back end. Leading in, it is great to play in high-pressure environments in front of big crowds,” Bairstow said.
England will play a one-off ODI against Ireland, before taking on Pakistan in five-match ODI series and a T20I in May. The Eoin Morgan-led side will begin its World Cup campaign on May 30 against South Africa.