Jonny Bairstow has confirmed that he will not play cricket again this year after revealing publicly for the first time the details of the horrific leg injury that has ruled him out of the T20 World Cup.
Bairstow, who will also miss England’s Test tour to Pakistan in December, suffered multiple fractures to his left fibula, a dislocated ankle and sustained ligament damage in a freak accident after slipping near the third tee at Pannal Golf Club early last month.
“Normally when you slip you fall on your bum, which would have been fine as there’s plenty of cushion in there,” Bairstow toldthe DailyTelegraph.
“Except this time I tried to regain my balance, my left ankle turned right, dislocated and my weight went through my left lower leg. I heard it snap straight away.
“I took a couple of steps down then slipped. By the time I crumpled into a heap, I was three-quarters of the way down. It’s all a blur, it happened so quickly.
“I yelped. Uncontrollable screams, the sort you hear on a rugby field. The adrenaline kicked in, and I knew I needed an ambulance. The next three hours without painkillers were not too fun.”
The injury arrived with the cruelest of timing for Bairstow, who had been in the form of his life following a sensational Test summer with England.
Across six Tests against New Zealand, India and South Africa, the Yorkshire batter scored 681 runs at an average of 75.66, including four centuries, and became the de-facto poster boy for England’s aggressive ‘Bazball’ resurgence under Brendon McCullum and Ben Stokes.
In a separate post on Instagram, Bairstow provided an update on his recovery but was unable to say when he would be fit to return.
“The operation went well and I am now three weeks post-surgery and my staples have been removed,” he wrote. “It’s now all about swelling prevention and getting my ankle moving once again. These next few weeks/couple of months are the key to the recovery.
“As for a time scale on return to play I’m afraid it is too early to say, the first targets in mind are getting me back on my two feet again and making sure it’s right.
“One thing is for sure and that is I shall not be partaking in anything more during 2022...however I cannot wait for what 2023 holds!!”
England’s first action in the New Year comes in a two-Test series against New Zealand in February.