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SportJos Buttler thinks England games should avoid clash with IPL

Jos Buttler thinks England games should avoid clash with IPL

England captain Jos Buttler says international cricket should not be scheduled at the same time as the IPL.

Buttler flew back from India to join up with the England T20 squad in Leeds on Saturday ahead of a four match series against Pakistan.

The first match on Wednesday evening at Headingley was washed-out, meaning the T20Is at Edgbaston, Sophia Gardens and The Oval will be England’s only preparation before flying to the Caribbean on May 31 to begin the defence of their World Cup title four days later.

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Buttler was one of eight members of England’s provisional T20 World Cup squad who flew back before the end of the IPL group stage last week, while he, Will Jacks, Reece Topley and Phil Salt saw their franchises qualify for this week’s knockout stages

Buttler is a star for the Rajasthan Royals who edged to a four-wicket victory with six balls remaining in their Eliminator against Royal Challengers Bengaluru on Wednesday without him.

The Royals will now face Sunrisers Hyderabad in the qualifier on Friday for a place in the final against Kolkata Knight Riders on Sunday – the day after England’s second match of the series in Birmingham.

Wednesday’s abandonment made the early return even more frustrating, Buttler told Sky Sports, adding: “We’ve had a couple of really good couple of days prep and everyone was excited for the series. Just putting the England kit back on and playing cricket in England is amazing so it’s really disappointing not to be playing, but there’s still three matches to look forward to.

“It’s a unique build-up (for the World Cup) – I think that’s why we felt it was a good to try and get the players all together for this series.

“It’s my personal opinion that there should never be any international cricket which clashes with the IPL, but my first priority at the moment is being England captain and trying to prepare as best we can for a world tournament.

“I always said to (England supremo) Rob Key I would definitely be coming back as England captain and he’s made the call on the rest of the players.”

Buttler said his message to his England squad would be ‘to play with confidence and clarity.’

He added: “We have a nice blended squad – a lot of experience but some guys who are on an upward curve, Phil Salt, Will Jacks, Harry Brook is still very early in his international career – these guys you see really trending in the right direction and pushing this team forward.

“Trying not to confuse freedom with a lack of clarity, that’s been a big learning for me. Sometimes you are trying to let players play with freedom and don’t want to step in too much. Maybe more communication (is needed) at times.”

England suffered a dismal defence of their 50-over World Cup crown before Christmas and Buttler admitted: “It was obviously a really disappointing World Cup, your pride gets dented and your confidence gets dented from those things a bit.

“We just didn’t play well enough, even if there was a lack of clarity you’d still expect us to perform better than we did.”

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