It’s just Pant’s, Buttler
RISHABH GETS JOS AS ENGLAND LOSE SERIES
ENGLAND’S T20 players rallied around Jos Buttler after they were humbled again by India.
The country’s new skipper suffered a second successive defeat as the tourists cruised to a comfortable 49-run victory – setting up a series whitewash if they can make it a treble at Trent Bridge today.
Buttler has spoken of his admiration for ‘Bazball’ – the aggressive approach adopted by new Test coach Brendon McCullum and captain Ben
Stokes – that has reaped successful reward.
But two flops on home soil have raised questions if it is the right plan of attack.
Moeen Ali said:
“The discussions we have are to keep backing ourselves.
“It’s going to take time. We’ve got some new players in the side.
“Obviously, we don’t want to keep losing, but Jos is cool with it.”
This was not the introduction to white-ball captaincy that Buttler had imagined.
On a ground where England had chased down a record total in a Test less than one week ago, Rohit Sharma and his men turned the tables in emphatic fashion at Edgbaston.
At Southampton on Thursday, the hosts had at least put up some resistance, but, much to the delight of the majority of the crowd, never looked remotely capable of overhauling India’s total yesterday.
England were unable to exert any real pressure upon wily opponents who were too streetwise with both bat and ball.
There were some highlights – particularly for debutant Richard Gleeson (below), who ripped out India’s top order – and four wickets as well for Chris Jordan (underneath).
But the only item on the agenda for Buttler now will be to avoid another loss today.
He said: “I’m very disappointed – but we didn’t play anywhere near well enough to win the game, so we got what we deserved.
“We don’t have much time to reflect, but we will consider what we’ve got for the next one.”
Gleeson was a surprise call-up, having only made his first-class debut seven years ago after spending time working in a boiler factory and as a landscape gardener.
He bowled, though, like he wanted to make up for lost time – striking with his fifth ball as Rohit top-edged and Buttler took a spectacular running catch.
And then Gleeson raised hopes that the Indians might crumble as he claimed another two wickets in as many balls. Dawid Malan pulled off the take of the day with a stunning effort – running back and clinging on over his shoulder after Virat Kohli skied one – and when the right-armer had Rishabh Pant caught behind, it was game on.
Jordan then grabbed two himself and it appeared as though England were in the driving seat.
However, Ravindra Jadeja proved a thorn in the red-ball format and his unbeaten 46 here held together the innings as the Indians posted 170-8.
It looked a competitive total and became even more so after Jason Roy edged the first ball of the reply to slip.
Buttler followed, caught by Pant, and Liam Livingstone’s attempt to blast his side out of trouble ended when he was castled by Jasprit Bumrah.
Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal was too clever for Harry Brook – deceiving him into lofting a catch to long-off – and when Malan was dismissed the writing was on the wall.
Moeen celebrated earning a three-year white-ball contract with Warwickshire by trying to orchestrate a fightback, but holed out for 35.
Adding to the circus, Jordan was run out off the first ball he faced following a mix-up over a second run and only an unbeaten late cameo from David Willey (33) gave the scoreboard any respectability as the Indians exacted instant revenge for their Test defeat here.