As Joe Root prepares to begin a good English cricket 2021, he made it clear that there is no one he would rather have behind the stumps than Jos Buttler. After a totally unobjectionable round of Covid 19 screening, England’s Test squad left for Sri Lanka on Saturday, and once a mandatory two-week quarantine and acclimatization in Hambantota is ticked off, they will head straight into the screening
It was the very ground on which Ben Foakes made his international debut in 2018, in his first Test innings, as he tamed the twisty track to score a consummate century, followed by a fast 37 to allow a declaration. Ben Foakes is waiting for another chance for England (Mike Egerton/PA) Even with the gloves, the Surrey man was impressive, marking his debut with two catches, a stumping and a run out before being called both Match Player and Series Player. If there was ever a place where Foakes fantasized opportunities to add to his five internationals, it is in the shadow of the famous Dutch fortress of the city In the last series against Pakistan, Buttler played one of his best games in an England shirt when he ended a seemingly futile chase at Emirates Old Trafford with a nerveless 75, followed by a gorgeous 152 at the Ageas Cup. When it comes to team selection, when we’re out there, we’re going to look at the conditions, weigh everything and make a decision,” Root said, before giving a rather revealing hint that some names have already been decided: “What I’m going to say is that we have Jos Buttler, who has just scored 150 and is probably in some of the best form you’ve seen in Test cricket. For Foakes, there was some relief, who I’m sure is very disappointed that initially he couldn’t stay in the eleven for longer. National selector Ed Smith has already suggested that during the India tour, which immediately follows Sri Lanka, there will be rest periods, and an all-rounder like Buttler is at the head of that queue: Jan 14-18 (Galle)2. Test: Jan 22-16 (Galle) “For Ben, at some point there is a likelihood that an opportunity will arise and when he gets that opportunity he has to take it,” Root added. “There could be periods where different players are rotated in and out throughout the winter. It will probably mean a slightly different makeup of the team at different times, but it will also be a great and exciting opportunity to look at things a little differently. “Buttler, meanwhile, would be delighted to hear that at Southampton, Root reached his career-best century, a knock almost entirely unconventional. “As a result of that game, the stock price of Crawley has risen and the next 12 months, culminating in the Ashes overseas, will show whether he can meet the growing expectations. In the summer, Zak Crawley scored an impressive 267 against Pakistan (Alastair Grant/PA) “Zak is a very exciting prospect. He has gained a lot of confidence,” said Root. “Zak is a very exciting prospect. He’ll have that in the back of his mind and it gives everybody an extra boost if he goes into the next game on the back of a mammoth score like that. “He’ll have that in the back of his mind and if he goes into the next game on the back of a mammoth score like that, it gives everyone an extra boost. ” A brilliant mentality is one thing he has: he wants to keep learning and improving. He has his feet firmly on the deck, so he undoubtedly offers himself the best opportunity to succeed.