T20 World Cup: Relieved Buttler thinks England are in 'a really good place'

By Sports Desk November 01, 2022

Jos Buttler feels England are in a "a really good place" after they kept their T20 World Cup fate in their own hands with a 20-run win over New Zealand.

England really needed a victory at the Gabba on Tuesday to stay in the hunt for a semi-final place and they rose to the occasion, with Buttler leading by example.

The captain top scored with 73 from 47 balls, becoming England's highest T20I run-scorer in his 100th match for his country in the shortest format after being dropped by Kane Williamson on eight and Daryl Mitchell when he had 40 to his name.

Buttler and Alex Hales (52 off 40) set England on their way to posting 179-6 in Brisbane and Group 1 leaders New Zealand fell short on 159-6 in reply.

The in-form Glenn Phillips (62 from 36) and captain Kane Williamson, who scored a run-a-ball 40, had given the Black Caps a good chance of sealing their place in the last four with a third-wicket stand of 91.

England were able to move up to second above Australia and Sri Lanka with a victory due to have a superior net run-rate, though, with Sam Curran (2-26) and Chris Woakes (2-33) the pick of the bowlers 

A win over Sri Lanka at the SCG on Saturday should be enough for England to qualify, although third-placed Australia could significantly improve their net run-rate when they take on Afghanistan on Friday.

Wicketkeeper-batter Buttler said: "I think it's a big relief to be heading to that last game knowing we have a chance at progressing.

"So, yeah, we go there really excited. I think the team is in a really good place after tonight. It showed great character in a must-win match.

"We'll head to Sydney full of confidence and expecting a really tough game against Sri Lanka.

"There is a little bit of a benefit obviously playing that last game to know exactly what is required of us."

Captain Williamson doffed his cap to England after a first defeat of the tournament for New Zealand, who will be expected to seal a semi-final berth when they play Ireland in Adelaide on Friday.

"Credit to the way England played, they played beautifully, put us under pressure from the get-go and were clinical. It was a slightly above-par total," said the batter.

"We tried to take it deep, but credit to the way they bowled. It was a fair surface, we were in it in the second half but needed a few things to go our way. We tried to target certain areas of the ground and take it deep."

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