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Bluey's back for Headingley opener

— 4 April 2013

Prolific England batsman Jonny Bairstow returned to Headingley this week with one objective in mind – ‘concentrate on Yorkshire and England will take care of itself.’

Bairstow, who played for England in their recent tour of New Zealand alongside Yorkshire colleague Joe Root, has been included in the White Rose side, which takes on Leeds/Bradford University MCCU in the opening match of 2013 season, which commences at Headingley on Friday. 

The 23-year-old Bradford-born wicket keeper batsman forced his way into England’s Test team against the West Indies this time last year with a breathtaking start to the LV= County Championship and if ‘Bluey’ can replicate that start again in 2013 he could bring some early season success to the County in the Club’s 150th anniversary year.

“First and foremost, the international stuff takes care of itself,” said Bairstow. “It’s completely out of my hands as far as I’m concerned.

“I’m just concentrating on the summer ahead and trying to do well for Yorkshire. We’re back in Division One, and it’s a fantastic time for us.

 “I’ve just got to concentrate on scoring runs whoever it’s against, whether it be for Yorkshire, for England or Driffield on a Saturday afternoon. If I’m scoring runs, other things will look after themselves.

“Professional sport happens so quickly that you can’t look too far ahead. The home Ashes is four months away and the other eight months.

“You can’t look at things like that because one injury could see you out for four months. A broken finger could see you out for a month.

“Walking down the street, you could hit by a bus or fall off the pavement. All you can do is concentrate on one delivery at a time.”

Bairstow will get his first opportunity against Leeds/Bradford University MCCU at Headingley on Friday in a 3-day match. Admission to Headingley is free of charge.