London : Injured middle-order batter Jonny Bairstow heaped praise on England for their ten-wicket victory over India in the semi-final of Men’s T20 World Cup, saying that the side were ‘fearless all the way’ in the run chase of 169 at the Adelaide Oval on Thursday.
England openers, captain Jos Buttler (80 not out from 49 balls) and Alex Hales (86 not out from 47) made a chase of 169 look like a cakewalk at Adelaide Oval, thrashing India by ten wickets to set up a meeting with Pakistan in the final at Melbourne Cricket Ground on Sunday.
“It was amazing, what a performance, as clinical as you can be. You need people to stand up in a semi-final and that’s exactly what happened. They were fearless all the way through the run chase,” said Bairstow to Sky Sports News.
Bairstow was all set to open the batting for England, only for a freak leg injury suffered at a golf course ruled him out of cricketing action for the rest of the year. It gave Hales a chance to open the batting alongside Buttler, as the duo starred in England’s victories over New Zealand, Sri Lanka and now India after a shock five-run loss to Ireland.
Bairstow added that England will be aware the job is not done yet as the title clash with Pakistan is still to be completed. “The character the guys have shown to come back from losing to Ireland and now being in a World Cup final is amazing but they will be well aware the job is not done yet.
“There will be confidence after that seven-match series in Pakistan (England won the series 4-3 in September and October) that we came out the right side of but we also know the qualities they have.””It is a level playing field when it comes to a World Cup final, I don’t think there are favourites.
If Pakistan’s players stand up, it is going to be an enthralling game but if we can take early wickets and get into the middle order, we should be alright.”England batter Joe Root feels that the Buttler-led side have started to peak in the tournament at the right time.
“It was an incredible performance against India. I think we’re just starting to peak at the right time. As a team performance, you can’t really ask for any more in a semi-final.””To stand up to the pressures of a game of that magnitude and perform like that was exceptional.
Credit to Jos for being able to get us in this position to be peaking at the right time. He looks very happy within himself and you can see that in his performances and the players around him.”