Having made his international debut in 2011, England wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler has come a long way. In particular, Buttler has played a key role in England’s resurgence in white-ball cricket after the 2015 World Cup disaster.
During the IPL auction in January, Buttler was roped in by the Rajasthan Royals for INR 4.40 crores. Besides Buttler, there are 11 other England cricketers who are featuring in the ongoing Indian Premier League.
The participation of 12 English players in IPL 2018 has come as a surprise to many given the fact that they were initially a bit circumspect to play in the cash-rich event. In his recent interview with Wisden India, Buttler has stated that the acceptance of IPL has done a world of good for England’s limited-overs team.
“There’s been a big culture change probably I think coincides with the IPL as well. There are 12 English players now. I think this is the most we’ve ever had here so the IPL has been a lot more accepted,” Buttler quoted.
Besides Buttler, Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer are also playing for the Rajasthan Royals whereas Moeen Ali and Chris Woakes are at the Royal Challengers Bangalore. Liam Plunkett and Jason Roy (Delhi Daredevils), Alex Hales and Chris Jordan (Sunrisers Hyderabad), Sam Billings, David Willey and Mark Wood (Chennai Super Kings) and Tom Curran (Kolkata Knight Riders) are the other England players to feature in this year’s IPL.
“It’s going to benefit ourselves and as a country, our team and guys experiencing the conditions and atmosphere and pressure. I’ve learnt a huge amount individually from the IPL and I’m sure everyone else has as well, so I think there’s been a big change in England about sort of taking white-ball cricket as seriously as red-ball cricket and I think that’s showing in the results for us as well,” he added.
Before the start of this season, Buttler had aimed to reap rewards by playing under the mentorship of legendary Shane Warne and now he in awe of the spin kings’ attention to detail.
“I think when you come across these great players, it’s just that amazing attention to detail and how fast his mind works and the things he picks up around the group and about different players in the opposition. It really gets you thinking about these things that you’ve not necessarily thought about,” Jos Buttler commented.
“He gives so much confidence to the group, just the way he talks, straight-talking, really gives guys confidence which is all you really want from anyone is in these franchise competitions when you’re together for a quite short period of time. You can get the guys feeling confident in the way he acts, in the way he gets his messages across,” he explained.
Apart from the lucrative contracts and the opportunity of working with cricket greats, events like IPL have helped reduce the hostility among players on the international stage. Although Buttler agreed with the comment, he highlighted that the competitive nature has also increased because of these leagues.
“That’s what Shane Warne was discussing… I think nowadays the players know each other a lot more. It’s obviously not like before, you get together with the opposition, have a beer after the game,” Buttler said.
“Whether that creates a different atmosphere in international cricket, probably does but at the same time, we’re such highly competitive professionals that we’re always going to… It probably makes it even more competitive, you’re trying to outdo someone you know well or you’ve had battles with in the nets and you both know each other well. Shared knowledge as well adds another dimension to the game,” he concluded.