The English wicket-keeper batsman, Jos Buttler reckons that the Indian Premier League (IPL) has helped English cricket grow and he also went on to acknowledge the cash-rich T20 tournament is the best in the world after the ICC World Cups. He said he was desperate to be a part of this year’s IPL, which now has been indefinitely suspended owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Buttler has been a part of two franchises in the IPL. After playing for Mumbai Indians (MI) in the 2016-17 season, he moved to Rajasthan Royals (RR) in 2018. During BBC Podcast ‘The Doosra’, Buttler said, “There’s no doubt that it (IPL) has helped English cricket grow and the numbers of players who were involved in the last few years. It was something I was desperate to play. For me it’s the best tournament in the world, taking out the World Cups.”
Buttler, who made massive strides as a white ball player after a few seasons of IPL, said the league is like the fantasy cricket he aspired to play as a kid, with the top stars of the game players with each other.
The English gloveman explained, “Some of the matchups you get to see in the IPL are great. Bangalore has been amongst the top three teams with (Virat)) Kohli, AB (de Villiers), and (Chris) Gayle coming up and then to see them up against a (Jasprit) Bumrah or a Dale Steyn or (Lasith) Malinga. As a kid growing up that is what you want to play — fantasy cricket. Mix all the teams together what it will be like if Kohli and de Villiers play together.”
Buttler also went on to credit former skipper Kevin Pietersen, who advocated for the creation of a separate window for the IPL, paving the way for English cricketers to be a part of the cash-rich tournament.
Hos Buttler explained, “English cricket has got quite an interesting history with the IPL. The documentary about Kevin Pietersen and how he wanted to get involved and the roadblocks he faced. He really paved the way for a lot of us to go and now play in the IPL with more blessings from English cricket. He is a pioneer in building the steps in place to realize just how important the IPL is for developing cricketers.”
The 13th IPL, which was scheduled to commence in March-end, was indefinitely suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has also put in doubt this year’s T20 World Cup in Australia.