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Jonny Bairstow is out of a hundred to rest ahead of South Africa series

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File photo of Jonny Bairstow.© AFP

Jonny Bairstow has pulled out of the controversial Hundred tournament to ensure he is fresh for England’s upcoming three-Test series at home to South Africa. Bairstow was named in the England squad announced on Tuesday for the first two Tests of the series starting at Lord’s on 17 August. England and South Africa will meet again at Old Trafford in Manchester before returning to London for the third Test at the Oval starting 8 September. Post-season tour schedules in England are also busy, especially for multi-format internationals like Bairstow, with series in Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand and Bangladesh in addition to the Twenty20 World Cup.

Bairstow, 32, was to represent Cardiff franchise Welsh Fire in the second season of English domestic cricket’s 100 balls per side competition, facing champions Southern Braves in Southampton on Wednesday.

“I am really disappointed that I will not be a part of The Hundred this year,” Bairstow said.

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“I loved it last year, but I’ve had a busy few months with the schedule and I really need to take a breather before the South Africa Test series.

“Good luck to the Welsh Fire men and women – I will make you happy.”

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