ENG v PAK 2018: Jos Buttler pleased to have performed on Test return

Butler's selection was questioned prior to the series and he is delighted to have answered with the bat.

Jos Buttler. (AFP)

There were doubts about his prowess as a red ball batsman, Jos Buttler's career before he played in the just concluded series against Pakistan was more known for his exploits in the limited overs game for England. He has been absolutely brilliant playing the white ball cricket but he would've deep down wanted to show his mettle in the pinnacle of it all. 

When he got selected to play this series against a quality Pakistan bowling attack by the national selector Ed Smith, Butler hadn't played a first-class game for a year. The thing that Smith backed was Buttler's form in the Indian Premier League and his game & ball sense. Buttler averaged a modest 30 in the first introduction to the toughest format, and so this was going to be interesting. 

The moment he batted at Lord's though, you could see why England have backed him. Batting at numbers like 6 and 7 in Test match cricket, especially in conditions like England and if provided a normal start to an innings, is more about the game sense and an understanding of the ball. Jos Buttler has it. His batting, against both - Seam and Swing - over the last few weeks against a very good attack, was absolutely brilliant. 

His knock at Lord's couldn't salvage the unsalvagable but his counter-attack in Headingley took the game away from Pakistan. What stood out were the limited overs shots balanced with a good defensive technique, as he became the man of the series for being its highest run-getter. 

Buttler is delighted to have made this transition as well, he was heard saying after the win that, “There were lots of unknowns coming into this series so it’s especially pleasing to have put in some decent performances and especially here to be part of a winning side,” 

When he got asked after the win at Leeds, whether he feels he has proved himself in Test Cricket with his series. He replied, “I think so. Over the last couple of years, I’ve had some great experiences all around the world in different competitions, That’s really helped. Coming into the series with someone (Smith) putting so much faith in me as a real wildcard pick gave me a hell of a lot of confidence, For someone to say ‘I’m backing you, you’re good enough. I arrived confident having had a great few weeks in India, so I felt in a really good place and wanted to continue that and wanted to play the situations in front of me.”


By Kashish Chadha - 05 Jun, 2018

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