Buttler utilises valuable World Cup planning lesson for England in Bangladesh defeat

By Sports Desk March 06, 2023

Jos Buttler was unfazed by England's ODI defeat to Bangladesh after a useful lesson for planning ahead of the Cricket World Cup.

Matthew Mott's tourists had already secured victory in the three-match series and opted for a host of changes in Monday's final ODI in Chattogram, where Bangladesh won by 50 runs.

Young leg-spinner Rehan Ahmed made his international white-ball debut, while all-rounder Sam Curran was promoted up the batting order as Buttler dropped down to make room.

England captain Buttler suggested the result mattered for little after seizing an opportunity to evaluate his options on a surface that may be similar to those at the World Cup in India, which starts in October.

"We changed a few things today and gave an opportunity to people in different ways, but I thought the intensity was still there," Buttler said.

"We certainly believed we could win the game, and if we played well enough, we would have won the game.

"But there was an opportunity today to give Rehan a debut, and for Sam to bat at No. 5, and this is the last ODI we play now until September.

"So, especially in these conditions, it felt like a great chance to gather as much information as we can, and expose people to different situations.

"If we lost the game, then so be it. But I certainly believed we had a team and a performance that could have won the game today."

The much-maligned cricket schedule has regularly been a topic of discussion, with the ODI series in Bangladesh a rare chance for England to plan away from the stress of pre-tournament warm-up fixtures.

England will head to the next global tournament as dual champions, having won the T20 World Cup in Australia last year and the 50-over version in a dramatic victory over New Zealand at Lord's in 2019.

Buttler reaffirmed confidence in all the moving parts within his England side fitting together when it comes to the next World Cup, as they did at the back end of 2022 in the T20 competition.

"I think the schedule is hugely challenging to always get your best XI on the field," Buttler said. "But the game has changed a bit [since] the previous cycle of the World Cup.

"Looking back to the T20 World Cup, we probably went into that World Cup having never played our perceived best XI.

"But then to get into the tournament and go on to win it, that gives you great confidence that, even though we haven't had the opportunities to always play our best team, international cricket has become [more] focused on the ICC tournaments.

"I think that's the way we're building towards that. And we know that, come the World Cup, we will have the opportunity to pick from everyone who's available."

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