Jos Buttler backs Joe Root ahead of World Cup despite poor form

Buttler said that Root's call to be available for the Ireland series shows his hunger to play

By Web Desk
September 20, 2023
Jos Buttler and Joe Root having a laugh -REUTERS

England captain Jos Buttler has backed seasoned batter Joe Root and claimed that he is arguably the best player in their team.

Root recently made headlines by voluntarily adding himself to England's squad for the first ODI against Ireland. This decision was made in light of his desire to regain his form in 50-over cricket ahead of the upcoming World Cup. The match is set to take place at Headingley on Wednesday, September 20th, 2023

Root's decision comes after a series of disappointing performances in the New Zealand ODI series. His struggle for form was evident as he returned a string of low scores, raising concerns about his readiness for the World Cup. In the first three games against New Zealand, Root scored only 6, 0, and 4 runs respectively, followed by a scratchy 29 in the fourth ODI at Lord's.

This lackluster performance exposed his lack of rhythm in the format. Since the 2019 World Cup, Root has only batted 16 times in ODIs, which may have contributed to his current form.

England's chief selector Luke Wright, speaking ahead of England's three-match series vs Ireland, said that Root has asked for a little more time to prove his form going into the ODI World Cup.

"It's great for someone to have that desire to keep wanting to do more," Wright said ahead of the first ODI that is set to be played on 20 September.

"He just wanted a bit more time," added Wright.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Buttler said that Root's call to be available for the Ireland series shows his hunger to play.

"It just shows his hunger to play," Buttler added. "He's someone who, over the last four years because of the schedule probably hasn't played as much 50-over cricket as he would like."

Buttler also backed Root ahead of the World Cup and claimed that he knows what he needs to do to get into form and be ready for the upcoming ICC event in India.

"He's an experienced guy and he knows what he needs. He's arguably the best player in our team and he just knows what he needs to get ready. It was very simple for all involved."