Sri Lanka v England: Stuart Broad and Jonny Bairstow reaction to being dropped 'fantastic'

Stuart Broad (left) and Jonny Bairstow
Stuart Broad and Jonny Bairstow have been regulars of the England side in recent years

The reaction of Stuart Broad and Jonny Bairstow to being dropped in Sri Lanka has been praised by England coach Trevor Bayliss.

Broad is England's second most successful bowler in Test cricket, with 433 wickets in 123 matches.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Bairstow was injured for the first Test but left out of the second in favour of Ben Foakes.

Bayliss said the pair had been "fantastic", as England have taken a 2-0 lead in the three-match series.

"They have been a big part of our team over a number of years," added Bayliss. "They've played a big role off the field.

"I think that shows the environment that is around this group of players.

"It won't be just about 11 players going forward but a squad of players that gets this team to, hopefully, number one in the world sometime."

Bairstow was injured for the opening Test in Galle but Foakes kept his place for the second Test after hitting a century on debut.

England captain Joe Root said Broad and Bairstow remain a "big part" of the squad after England secured their first series win in Sri Lanka for 17 years.

There is one Test left, starting on Friday, but Bayliss refused to say if the pair would be recalled.

"Personally, it's not about giving players a game just for the sake of it. It is Test Cricket. It's a Test cap," he said.

"My point of view is we'll go down the same track as we have done for these last two Tests."

Root, who said his side needed to be "bolder" and more "courageous" prior to the series, made 124 in England's second innings in the second Test as his side went on to win by 57 runs.

"It was great to watch," added Bayliss. "He's made some statements about how he wants the team to play and sometimes I feel like he might put himself under a bit of pressure doing that.

"But, hopefully, this is a sign that he can get the combination right and go out and play. It was a fantastic innings under a lot of pressure on a difficult wicket.

"He'll get better and better as a captain, not just as a player. When you get some experience and get some wins under your belt and you learn what works and what doesn't."


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