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Jonny Bairstow: England wicketkeeper receives father’s gloves held by fan for 39 years


England wicketkeeper David Bairstow (right) faced India in 1979

Here is a story from this Ashes series likely to tug at the heartstrings of the most unsentimental.

Back in 1978, young cricket fan Andrew Johns was taken by his parents to Adelaide’s West Lakes shopping centre to meet the England Ashes squad, which contained the likes of Geoffrey Boycott, Graham Gooch and Ian Botham.

At the event there was a prize on offer for the person who knew who England’s reserve wicketkeeper was – Andrew raised his hand and answered, “David Bairstow”. His reward? A pair of gloves signed by the man himself.

Those gloves have since been sitting in a box, until recently when Andrew finally had the opportunity to gift them to Jonny Bairstow, the son of the former international.

Andrew had contacted Bairstow Jr by Instagram when he found out the 28-year-old Yorkshire player would be part of the 2017-18 squad.

“I got a message back that night saying, ‘It would be nice to meet you’, from his management or whatever,” he told Australia’s ABC Grandstand programme.