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  • England 2 min read

    Buttler: IPL experience can help England's Champions Trophy bid

    Wicketkeeper-batsman believes he has benefitted from opening the batting for the Mumbai Indians.

    Jos Buttler believes his IPL experience as an opening batsman will improve him as a player and help England in their quest to win the ICC Champions Trophy on home soil this summer.

    Buttler has joined up with the England squad following six weeks in India during which he opened the batting for the Mumbai Indians as the IPL franchise topped the 10-match group stage.   

    The 26-year-old is expected to return to the middle order for the Three Lions for the three-match Royal London ODI series against South Africa before the Champions Trophy campaign gets underway in June.

    “It was a brilliant experience again. I batted at the top of the order which was something new and exciting, and it went pretty well,” Buttler told ecb.co.uk.

    “I really enjoyed the role and I think it’s a good development step for me as a player. Hopefully I can be a better player from the whole experience – starting this summer with England.

    “I’m still young, I’m 26, and at this time in my career to do something completely different was an interesting challenge.

    “It can always go better, I feel like I could have scored more runs because I got off to some good starts. I would love to have kicked on a few more times but overall it went pretty well.

    “I don’t know if opening the batting is something I see myself doing long-term, my best role is probably still accelerating and finishing the innings towards the end.”

    Hopefully the players can now go on and win the IPL - it's a fantastic tournament

    Buttler admits he did not expect to open the batting in India but saw the logic after being told to lead from the front by Mumbai coach Mahela Jayawardene.

    The wicketkeeper-batsman enjoyed coming up against England team-mates such as Eoin Morgan, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes and Sam Billings in India - and now hopes Mumbai continue their form into the knockout stages of the IPL.

    "I didn't expect it when I arrived in India but I spoke to Mahela and his idea was to use me at the start of the innings because he had Pollard and the two Pandya brothers in the middle order," Buttler added.

    "He wanted to use me at a different stage to go and play with some freedom and I think by and large it worked pretty well. It was a great experience and for me it was really good to see other England players out there in India and to play against them.

    "We finished top of the group with was obviously a pleasing position to leave the team coming home. Hopefully the players can now go on and win the IPL - it's a fantastic tournament and it would be a great achievement."

     

     

     

                     

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