England head coach Trevor Bayliss has declared on Tuesday (November 27) that Ben Foakes will keep wickets in their Test campaign against West Indies in January 2019 despite Jonny Bairstow has already expressed his desire to play as wicketkeeper-batsman in the Test side.
Bayliss further went on to challenge Bairstow to make the No 3 position his own in Test cricket after he slammed 110 in his first outing at this position in Colombo, saying the Yorkshireman has the "talent" to nail down the most-experimented slot in the longest format of the game.
Foakes came into the side as an injury replacement for the Sri Lanka Tests and he grabbed the opportunity with both hands, finished the three-match series as the top run-scorer with 277 runs, including a debut century in Galle, as the Lions completed a 3-0 clean sweep here.
Bayliss told Sky Sports Cricket, “Even Jos Buttler wants to keep but the way Foakesy has gone in this series he will definitely be there for the next one.”
On Bairstow's desire to play as wicketkeeper-batsman in Tests, Coach said, “We don't want to put any undue pressure on other people but it does keep guys in the team on their toes. It's a good thing in the long run to have depth and competition.”
Bayliss signed off by saying, “Since I've been here, every time Jonny has had a challenge thrown at him he has been able to come out and score some runs. The trick for us is to come up with a challenge every time he goes out to bat! He has got the goods. The challenge for him will be at home on seaming wickets but he has certainly got the talent to master that as well.”
Noteworthy, England will tour West Indies in January 2019 to play three Tests, five One Day Internationals, and three T20 International along with two practice matches here.
(With Sky Sports Inputs)