Today’s rain in Hobart relented enough for Jonny Bairstow to work on his wicketkeeping with specialist coach Bruce French.
Bairstow, the reserve gloveman to Matt Prior on this tour, is not in the side to face Australia A at the Bellerive Oval, where there was a second straight washout today.
Former England keeper French put Bairstow through his paces to ensure the 24-year-old’s glovework is in fine fettle should he have to replace Prior in the Test team.
Speaking exclusively to ecb.co.uk, Bairstow said: “The basics really, that’s kind of the key of what we’ve been looking at, whether it be posture, weight distribution, where your hands are and where you are taking the ball.
“It’s been really good to get a session in today. Obviously with the ground being a bit softer with it being wet, it’s quite nice to be doing a bit of diving on it as well.”
Bairstow is Yorkshire’s first-choice gloveman, but his involvement in England’s Test and limited-overs squads over the last two years has restricted his opportunities to keep for the White Rose.
As well as working with batting coach Graham Gooch, Bairstow is making the most of having French around.
“Working hard with Bruce is one of the main focuses that I’ve got while he’s here,” Bairstow explained.
“It’s obviously brilliant to have him around and have that expertise in a certain area with you day in day out.
“And then (I’m) obviously working with Goochie as we have done all summer on the batting side of things and just hopefully waiting for an opportunity.”
French, who won 16 Test and 13 one-day international caps from 1986 to 1988, said: “With Jonny it’s just a case of bedding in his technique. He’s worked hard on his technique, his keeping technique.
“It’s all going really well. At the moment he’s trying to refine that technique and bed it (in), which today went really well.
“I put him under a bit of pressure and then put him straight into this ramp drill, which is a really good drill. It’s really realistic.”
French, 54, added: “Consistency’s the key and if his technique is consistent, he’s going to catch the ball consistently.
“There’s some really good catches in there, some really spectacular one-handed catches, which is great, which is what we’re after, which is brilliant.
“But I’m also looking at the basic straightening, whether everything’s just going in nicely, (whether) everything’s in the right place basically.”