Buttler unsure over Test return as England's limited-overs captain focuses on World Cup

By Sports Desk December 07, 2022

Jos Buttler does not know if he will return to the Test fold for England, stressing his focus remains firmly on white-ball cricket ahead of next year's World Cup defence.

Having led his side to success in the T20 World Cup last month in Australia, the wicket-keeper-batsman will look to defend the 50-over trophy he won as part of Eoin Morgan's side in 2019 next October.

Buttler's commitments to the sport's shorter formats has seen him kept out of the red-ball game, having last played for the Test team in January.

With the World Cup now 10 months away, the 32-year-old is not ruling out a return, but says it is not a priority with his other commitments.

"We will wait and see [but] I don't know for the minute, to be honest," he told Sky Sports News.

"I am really enjoying what I'm doing at the moment, and getting the opportunity to captain the white-ball teams has been a great challenge and really enjoyable.

"The attention turns to the 50-over World Cup and trying to think ahead and planning how we tackle that tournament. We've had a couple of retirements from the side, some stalwarts in Stokes and Morgan.

"We've got to work out how we fill that hole and give guys the opportunity to take those positions up and look to build a balanced team ahead of the tournament."

Test skipper Ben Stokes has retired from the ODI format since succeeding Joe Root as red-ball captain, but has not ruled out coming back into the fold for the World Cup.

Buttler would not be drawn on whether he would reverse his decision, however, adding: "He's got lots on his plate captaining the Test team and obviously some exciting series coming up with the Ashes next year especially.

"We'll just plan ahead and give guys the opportunity and things will work themselves out naturally.

"I think over the next six to eight months, guys will perform really well and put their hand up and try to stake a claim for those positions."

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