Nasser Hussain lauds Jonny Bairstow ahead of milestone 100th Test

The upcoming fifth Test of the ongoing series between India and England will be played at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala from Thursday, March 7. The clash between both sides would be a rather special one for England wicketkeeper-batter Jonny Bairstow.

The encounter will be a landmark one for the 34-year-old, as he will be playing his 100th Test match, marking a monumental occasion for the veteran. Bairstow will become only the 17th English cricketer to represent his country in 100 or more red-ball games, and ahead of the clash, former England skipper Nasser Hussain came forward to heap praise on Bairstow’s career.

Hussain opined that the right-handed batter has done everything that the English team has asked of him throughout his career, whether that would be as a batter or as a wicketkeeper.

“He polarises opinion at times, but he has done pretty much everything England have asked of him whether it be as a batter or as a wicketkeeper-batter. Because of his late father David and the connection with keeping, he’s always been reticent to give up the gloves,” Hussain wrote in his column for The Daily Mail.

“But because of his brilliance with the bat during an international career of incredible innings—think of the six hundreds in eight appearances in 2022 or his maiden hundred in Cape Town alongside Ben Stokes in 2016—debate about his best role in the side has lingered,” he added.

Will be a great occasion for Bairstow: Hussain

Furthermore, Nasser Hussain talked of how big of a moment the Dharamsala Test would be for Jonny Bairstow. It is worth noting that, despite boasting brilliant numbers as a specialist batter for England in Tests, Bairstow performs even better as the wicketkeeper. With 3300 runs in 55 Tests, Bairstow’s career as a wicketkeeper batter has flourished significantly.

“This will be a great occasion for Jonny Bairstow. He’s an emotional cricketer anyway, as we’ve seen over the years, and to reach 100 Test matches after all the ups and downs he has been through will make his family incredibly proud,” wrote Hussain.