England’s new Test coach Brendon McCullum has hinted at a possible return of Jos Buttler to red-ball format following the latter’s dazzling run-spree in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022.
Buttler has been in remarkable form for the Rajasthan Royals (RR), powering his franchise into Sunday’s final against Gujarat Titans (GT) on the back of four centuries in 16 games, at a spectacular average of 58.85 and strike rate of 151.47.
Notably, Buttler was dropped from the Test squad after England’s horrible 4-0 loss against Australia in the Ashes. Despite being one of the world’s best white-ball hitters, the 31-year-old averages only 31.94 in the longest format. In the recently-announced English squad for the upcoming first two Tests against New Zealand, Buttler was not named, with Ben Foakes and Jonny Bairstow being picked in the outfit.
McCullum, who himself saw Buttler’s brilliance as coach of the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in IPL 2022, has hinted towards the return of the English star in the red-ball outfit. The former New Zealand captain observed that if a player is good at T20, he can bring those skills to Test cricket as well.
“Jos is one of those players you look at instantly and think how could he be so dominant in one form of the game and not quite have found his feet, other than a few fleeting performances, in Test cricket?,” said McCullum as quoted by ESPNcricinfo.
“There’s certainly guys you look at and think there’s a lot of talent that could improve the side given the right opportunity. There’s no reason why, if you’re good at T20, you can’t bring those skills into Test cricket, and you look at some of the guys who have dominated the IPL in the last two months,” added McCullum.