Emotional Jonny Bairstow dedicates 100th Test to cancer-survivor mother

Emotional Jonny Bairstow dedicates 100th Test to cancer-survivor mother


Tags: England tour of India 2024,
Jonathan Marc Bairstow,
India vs England, 5th Test at Dharamsala, Mar 07-11, 2024

Published on: Mar 05, 2024

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England cricketer Jonny Bairstow, who will be playing in his 100th Test later this week, has dedicated his landmark moment to his mother. Bairstow’s mother is a cancer-survivor and the 34-year-old described her as his driving force and the person that kept the family together through the difficult times.

When Bairstow takes the field in Dharamsala on Thursday, March 7, he will become the 17th player from England to feature in 100 or more Test matches. Earlier, Ben Stokes became the 16th player to achieve the feat, also in the same series against India.

Speaking to ‘Telegraph Sport’, an emotional Bairstow recalled his tough times as a child and hailed his mother for all her sacrifices and hard work, while also battling cancer. The cricketer was only eight years old when his father David, a former England wicketkeeper, died by suicide.

“When I play, there are times I think about Dad. But I think more about how hard Mum worked to make sure we were OK after everything that happened. To keep us together as a family. That has been my driving force,” he told ‘Telegraph Sport’.

“My mum is the embodiment of strength. There was a determination there. She worked three jobs and had two kids that were under 10 at a difficult time. She was taking me to Leeds United (where he played youth football), to Headingley, all sorts of other places. It’s paying all that back, making sure they are OK, creating a life for my own family as well,” he added.

“She had cancer twice. She’s a bloody strong woman, to get through that twice, before you even consider anything else she’s been through, and it shows the strength and determination of the woman,” Bairstow continued in praise of his mother.

The cricketer often draws comparison with his late dad. Reacting to the same, Bairstow hopes that ‘he’s sitting up there, having a beer, looking down proudly, and enjoying the week’.

The right-handed batter also added that he was always keen to be a Test cricketer and also opened up on his favorite memories and players while watching England play the red-ball format.

“I didn’t grow up watching one-day cricket, I grew up watching Test cricket. It was everything to me. I loved [Michael] Vaughan, [Marcus] Trescothick, KP [Kevin Pietersen]. I remember going to Headingley, watching England do an indoor net session. They were in the Vodafone blue tracksuits, and I was in awe of it. It inspired me and I was desperate to be a part of it,” he said.

“It’s going to be an emotional week. I want to enjoy the occasion, and try to put on a show with the lads for the amazing fans that follow us around the world,” Bairstow concluded.

In 99 Tests, the England keeper-batter has scored 5,974 runs at an average of 36.42, with 12 hundreds and 26 fifties.

–By A Cricket Correspondent


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