James Anderson to make a comeback in ODIs? Jos Butler answers
Ahead of England's much-anticipated opening match against New Zealand in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023, English skipper Jos Buttler displayed remarkable poise and wit when confronted with an absurd question about the absence of James Anderson and Stuart Broad from the squad. The incident occurred during a press conference on Wednesday (October 4), just a day before England's clash with the Kiwis at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.
The query posed to Buttler revolved around the impact of not having one of England's premier pacers James Anderson and the recent retirement of Stuart Broad on their bowling lineup for the World Cup. It was a question that seemed to lack awareness about the format, given that both Anderson and Broad have long refrained from participating in One Day Internationals (ODIs). Anderson's last ODI appearance dates back to 2015 while Broad played his last ODI in 2016 before choosing to focus on Test cricket. Broad formally announced his retirement from all forms of cricket, including ODIs, in July 2023.
Butler talks about James Anderson comeback
Buttler, rather than mocking the reporter or expressing frustration at the ill-informed question, responded with remarkable composure and humor. With a calm smile, he said,
"I think Jimmy is still available for selection. He has not played since 2015, and I don't think Stuart has either, even though he has retired. Those two guys unfortunately won't be a part of this tournament. But yes, we do have a really good side of fast bowlers, spinners - a nicely-balanced team."
Jos Buttler's response showcased not only his ability to handle tricky situations with grace but also his confidence in England's bowling lineup despite the absence of Anderson and Broad. It is worth noting that England enters this World Cup as defending champions, having clinched the title in the 2019 edition. Buttler's assertion that they have a well-rounded bowling attack reinforces the team's determination to retain the trophy.
England's white-ball revolution over the last few years has been instrumental in their success, culminating in twin trophy victories in the ODI and T20 World Cups in 2022. The team led by Buttler aims to continue their winning momentum and make history by becoming the first English side to win consecutive ODI World Cups.