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Ben Foakes ready to make way for Jonny Bairstow despite impressive debut

Ben Foakes has stated he could be “quite happy” if Jonny Bairstow replaces him for the second Test in Pallekele, despite profitable Man of the Match for his performances on debut in Galle.

Deputising for the injured Bairstow, Foakes laid the platform for England’s match-defining first-innings whole with a century and adopted it with an impressive show of protecting. In the method he turned not solely the primary England keeper to make a Test century in Asia (and solely the second to make a century on debut) however equalled a file for the quickest dismissal by a keeper of their first innings when he took a catch from the second ball of the Sri Lanka reply.

But as an alternative of presuming his efficiency would guarantee he retains his place for the second Test, Foakes acknowledged Bairstow’s file and the extent of competitors for locations within the England squad. And, having organized to take a winter away from cricket – Foakes had declined the chance to go on a Lions tour and deliberate to relaxation till his call-up as damage cowl lower than two-weeks in the past – it appears he’s viewing all the pieces that comes his way as one thing of a bonus.

“Jonny, I think, will be fit [for the second Test],” Foakes stated. “I suppose he is the No. 1 and if I play one recreation I am fairly pleased with that one.

“The huge factor for me is simply making my debut and having the ability to say I am an England Test cricketer. Regardless of what is occurred, that is such a particular feeling that no-one can take away. To be sincere should you requested me two weeks in the past, I used to be having six months off, so to be sat right here now could be unbelievable.”

It was noticeable that Bairstow was one of many first to congratulate Foakes when he walked off having made that first-innings century. And Foakes insisted he has had nothing however assist from his team-mates.

“It’s such a very good workforce surroundings to stroll into,” he said. “Everyone desires everybody to do effectively. You can perceive in some groups there’s completely different guys going for completely different spots, however there’s none of that.”

Foakes’ efficiency additionally drew reward from England’s captain, Joe Root, who stated he was relishing the tough choice selections he would have to make forward of the second Test.

“It’s actually pleasing to see somebody are available in and actually benefit from the event,” Root said. “He wasn’t overawed in any respect. He got here in below stress however performed with maturity and an understanding of his personal recreation in a troublesome place. And he took each likelihood.

“We’ve some troublesome alternatives forward, however I am not complaining about that. It’s nice to see the power in depth on this squad. I am going to take pleasure in that troublesome choice assembly. It goes to be powerful. But that is what you need. You need guys performing, you need to make these powerful calls.

“Ultimately, it is a couple of group performing. Not making it about your self being concerned within the XI. It’s about being a part of this squad. I feel that is a very powerful factor. The actual achievement is to be a part of this squad to hopefully go on to win this tour.”

England will now break the lengthy street journey to Kandy – a six-hour drive from Galle – by spending an evening in Colombo, which is a couple of third of the way. They will mark Armistice Day on Sunday with a two-minute silence at their resort in Kandy at four.30pm native time, which is 11am again within the UK.

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