Jonny Bairstow missed out on a magnificent hundred after last man James Anderson was trapped lbw by Cameron Green to conclude England’s first innings for 592 on Day 3 of the fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford.
Prior to the dismissal, Bairstow had the opportunity to score two runs to bring up his century but chose not to risk a run-out and settled for a single. Anderson was entrusted to see out the remaining three deliveries of the over or hand the strike back.
The No. 11 batter, however, moved way across to play a delivery bowled by Green from around the wicket. The ball evaded the bat’s edge and hit Anderson’s right pad. Umpire Joel Wilson straightaway adjudged it as out, but England opted to take a last-ditch review.
Have a look at the dismissal right here:
The umpire’s call stood and Bairstow had to walk back to the pavilion unbeaten on 99 off just 81 deliveries. The wicketkeeper-batter hit 10 fours and four sixes, taking on the Australian bowling attack and their defensive fields.
He came into bat during the 84th over and played the majority of the balls since then, while the lower order hung around enough to help Bairstow almost claim a sensational century.
Jonny Bairstow came into the fourth Test amid harsh criticism by players and pundits alike
Across the first three Tests, Jonny Bairstow was not having a good series either with the bat or behind the stumps. His dropped catches proved to be a huge factor in England trailing 2-1 in the five-match Ashes series. He was not among the runs as well, managing only 141 runs across six innings.
There were several calls for Bairstow to be dropped and replaced with the more technically sound Ben Foakes. England, however, stuck with him and he has not repaid the faith bestowed on him.
With their mammoth first innings score, the hosts have amassed a 275-run lead and the game could head towards an interesting direction considering the weather forecast for the final set of days, which projects heavy rain.