England wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow feels playing international cricket is the best way to prepare for the World Cup.
Bairstow acknowledged that international cricket is irreplaceable as he strives to fine-tune his skills for England's World Cup defense.
Bairstow was in excellent form, crafting an undefeated 86 from 60 balls, establishing a solid platform for a resounding 95-run win over New Zealand in the second T20 match at Old Trafford on Friday.
With the World Cup on the horizon, scheduled to get underway in India in just over a month, Bairstow expresses his satisfaction at getting back into action after participating in only four matches of The Hundred following the conclusion of the Ashes series in July.
What did Bairstow say?
“I just wanted to play, to be quite honest with you,” the England veteran said after the match. “I wanted to be back out playing white-ball cricket because I think that the natural rhythms of the games, whether it's T20 or 50-over cricket, is something that, especially when you're playing internationally, is something that’s very hard to replicate.
“You can play the Hundred, you can play for Yorkshire, but the different bowlers, the pressures, the crowds, the pitches – everything that comes with playing international cricket – is very difficult to replicate.
“So I was very keen to play these T20s leading into the ODIs and then, naturally, leading into the World Cup in a few weeks' time.”
Bairstow and his Yorkshire team-mate Harry Brook forged an electrifying 131-run partnership in just 65 balls.
Despite being controversially left out of England's initial World Cup squad, Brook unleashed five sixes in a fiery knock of 67 runs off 36 balls.
In his debut appearance, Gus Atkinson put up a remarkable show, taking an impressive four wickets for just 20 runs, leading to New Zealand's downfall as they managed to score only 103 runs in reply.
How did Jonny Bairstow perform?
During the 2019 World Cup, Bairstow showcased his prowess as one of England's most aggressive batsmen. Teaming up with Jason Roy as the opening pair, they established a destructive combination that propelled England to some of their highest scores in the competition.
Bairstow tallied 532 runs throughout the tournament, boasting an impressive average of 48.36 and a formidable strike rate of 92.84. Notably, he scored two centuries in the competition, both during the business end of the group stages.
The Yorkshire man became the first English batsman to score a World Cup ton against India. He reached triple figures in 90 balls before finishing his innings at 111 off 109 deliveries.
Bairstow continued his excellent form in the next match, scoring 106 runs from 99 balls against New Zealand. His innings laid the groundwork for England's total of 305 runs, which New Zealand couldn't overcome.