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‘Jos Buttler has a gear not many have’ – Eoin Morgan

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

Eoin Morgan was all praise for Jos Buttler after the latter hammered his eighth ODI century in the second game against Pakistan at the Ageas Bowl on Saturday, May 11.

Buttler’s boundary-laden 55-ball 110* powered England to a dominating total of 373-3, but England eventually won only by 12 runs with Pakistan opener Fakhar Zaman scoring 138 off 106. It meant that Buttler’s late charge made all the difference in the result.

Buttler’s rapid century was his fifth entry into the top ten list of fastest hundreds by Englishmen. His achievements, as Morgan puts it, are ‘freakish’.

“He’s really good,” said Morgan after the game. “His freakish knocks seem to be getting closer together, which is a great thing for us.

“He has a gear that not many of us have. I don’t have it but it’s great to watch. He always seems to time his run really well. He always seem to have enough balls to bash a hundred. He was the difference between the sides.”

While Buttler, Zaman and others were in the spotlight in a match where 734 runs were plundered, there were also some positive signs for England in the bowling department. David Willey, who has been under pressure to keep his spot since the arrival of Jofra Archer, acquitted himself with an excellent performance in the death. In his final spell, he took 2-17 in three overs to swivel the game in England’s favour.

While more bowlers performing well is a great sign for England, it leaves them with a difficult call to make – that of deciding which bowler to leave out for the World Cup 2019 at home. As things stand now, Jofra Archer isn’t in the squad, but after some stunning spells since his England debut, he’s likely to be picked before the May 23 deadline.

“They’re all pushing each other,” Morgan said. “It’s a bit like our batting unit the last two or three years. Guys who come in and do well have missed out.

“For the last four years, David Willey and Liam Plunkett, in particular, have reacted really well to being put under pressure. You ask them to do more and they respond really well. They probably don’t get the praise that they should or that other guys get. But the more responsibility we’ve given them, they’ve reacted really well.”

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