Moeen Ali and Jonny Bairstow (r) © Getty Images
Moeen Ali and Jonny Bairstow (r) © Getty Images

Things seem to have changed for Moeen Ali, once the apple of the eye of England, after an ordinary 2017-18 Ashes. There have been calls for Moeen being dropped ahead of Sydney Test on January 4. Despite the backlash, keeper Jonny Bairstow has asked fans to support Moeen and not discard him based on just one series. According to Sportstar, Bairstow said: “The guy is the second-fastest ever to 2000 Test runs and 100 Test wickets. It’s unquestionable to even think that he’s not in our best XI. He wouldn’t have played the first four Test matches if he wasn’t … There’s [sic] not many finger-spinners that will come to Australia and bowl teams out. It’s very important that we get behind Mo. He can take a game away from you, and whether it be the next game or the first Test in New Zealand, the capabilities of Moeen Ali are unquestioned.”

Rumours are that Mason Crane may be included in the Sydney Test. Bairstow rubbished such claims as well: “You’ve got to play your best team. We’re still in it to win games of cricket. Whether that’s Mason playing, the XI will be going out to win this next Test match.”

He also discussed the Sydney Test in detail: “Yes, the series has gone. But you can see from the spirit that the guys showed in the last Test match that by no means is the foot off the gas. We’re very proud to play cricket for England. We’re indebted to the guys coming out, the best fans in the world.”