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‘Stitched up’ Bairstow hopes Aussies don’t ‘cross the line’ again

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Jonny Bairstow says he felt “stitched up” by the Cameron Bancroft head-butt story.

The England wicketkeeper also said some of the Australian sledging had crossed the line in the first Test but the game at Adelaide had been played in a better spirit.

Writing in his column for the Daily Mail, Bairstow said: “Did I feel as if I had been stitched up? Yes I did in many ways, but at the same time I honestly never thought of it as anything to worry about. I knew I hadn’t done anything wrong and, more importantly, the team and management knew that too.

“Australia, as they have admitted, were trying to use it to get under my skin.”

He also added to the comments made about Australia’s verbals by Matt Prior a few days ago.

“Some other things, apart from the ‘headbutt’ business, were said by Australia in the middle but what they were is staying there. We move on. Hopefully it’s gone now. I’m not making an issue of it. Only if they are said again would the matter go further. We just need to get on with trying to get back in this series.

“The second Test was played in a good spirit, tough but fair. There were some verbals from both teams but this time nothing crossed the line. Clashes like we saw in Adelaide are part of sport.”

There has been a clamour from England fans for Bairstow to be moved up the batting order for the third Test in Perth. The Yorkshireman has been at No.7 behind Moeen Ali so far, and after the use of nightwatchman in Adelaide ended up at No.8 in the fourth innings.

The third Test begins on December 14.

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