T20 World Cup: Buttler hails 'ultimate competitor' Stokes after England win final

By Sports Desk November 13, 2022

Jos Buttler labelled Ben Stokes the "ultimate competitor" after his first T20I half-century saw England beat Pakistan to win the T20 World Cup at the MCG.

Chasing a target of 138 after bowling first, England captain Buttler had hit 26 from 17 deliveries himself but departed with his team still needing 93 more runs.

After a slow start, Stokes eventually took the game to Pakistan along with Moeen Ali (19 from 12). Stokes then hit the winning run to end on an unbeaten 52 from 49 balls.

There were five fours and a six in that knock, which finished with the final ball of the 19th over.

"He's the ultimate competitor in anything he does," Buttler said at the post-match presentation.

"He's got a hell of a lot of experience to bank on, he can take a lot on his shoulders. He timed it perfectly, that impetus he and Moeen Ali had at that phase of the game just took it away from Pakistan."

Speaking to Sky Sports after the presentation, Buttler was asked if he had been comfortable leaving Stokes at the crease after his own dismissal.

"I was comfortable after 10 overs, and then I said to someone: 'If he played like that in a Test match, he'd drop himself'," Buttler joked. "He managed to get it done in the end."

Buttler shared the praise around, with England's success scarcely seeming imaginable after a Super 12 loss to Ireland.

"To be able to win the T20 World Cup, I'm just immensely proud of everyone here," he said. "It's been a long journey and a few changes of how we've played over the last few years, and we're reaping the rewards of that.

"It's been a fantastic tournament. We've been away for a long time; we went to Pakistan before coming here, which was a really valuable time for the group.

"This felt a long way away after the Ireland match, but the character we've shown from that point on in must-win games has been amazing."

England limited Pakistan to 137-8 from their 20 overs, with the turning point coming at the start of the 12th over when Adil Rashid (2-22) caught and bowled Babar Azam for 32 before completing a maiden over.

"Absolutely that was a huge swing in the game, that was a fantastic over from Adil," Buttler said. "The last three games especially, he's been outstanding for us. He's always been the guy that we've thrown the ball to to make things happen.

"It certainly wasn't easy, we managed to get away to a decent start, which controlled the run rate. We bat deep as well, which gave us a lot of options and trust."

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