England coach Trevor Bayliss has confirmed Jonny Bairstow will miss the first Test against Sri Lanka because of his ankle injury. The 29-year-old wicketkeeper suffered a sprained ankle earlier in the tour when playing football and was forced to miss the final two one-day internationals of the five-match series, which England won 3-1.
It was hoped that Bairstow would be fit in time for the start of the first Test in Galle from Tuesday, but Bayliss has now confirmed that he will sit it out.
He said: “Jonny is not available for this Test match. “He has come on a long way in the last week or so but with another winter tour and a big summer, we didn’t necessarily want to risk it.”
Bayliss revealed that they will now make a decision on who will keep wicket out of Jos Buttler, who has 25 Test appearances under his belt, and the uncapped Ben Foakes.
Buttler would usually be favourite, but the fact he bemoaned his wicketkeeping performances in the ODI series means Foakes could get the nod.
Bayliss added: “They’re both still very much in our thinking and that will probably come down to the combination we want to play. “Definitely one of them will be keeping but how we structure the batting order and what combination of bowlers we put in to the team could determine who eventually gets the gloves.”