One of RR’s mainstay batsman, Jos Buttler has revealed that he offered himself to bat in RR’s middle-order for creating a better team balance in the 2020 edition of the IPL. He also added that the decision stemmed from the fact that they were unable to win games from winning positions.
Despite having unbelievable success for Rajasthan Royals at the top of the order, mid-way into the season, the right-handed Jos Buttler was pushed into the Royals’ middle-order, as Ben Stokes made a switch to the top. While the decision was ineffective in the starting, towards the end of the tournament, the decision bore fruit for Royals despite them not reaching the play-offs stage.
From a personal standpoint, Buttler’s season was rather disappointing, with the batsman only scoring 328 runs for the franchise, at an average of 32.80. His best knock in the middle-order came in the clash against CSK, where the Royals were reduced to 28/3, with the right-hander scoring a match-winning 48-ball 70, taking Royals to an incredible victory. Following the season, Buttler has revealed that it was he who offered to bat in the franchise’s middle-order for a better team balance.
"Rahul Tewatia had a great season for us with the bat, being a bit of a finisher, but I felt like a more experienced guy alongside him would have balanced our team a bit better. It was an offering, really, from myself to say: I haven't had the runs I'd have liked at the top and I'm quite happy to move. I thought for our team, it looked a better balance having a more experienced player in the middle as well," Buttler told Sky's IPL Cricket Show, reported ESPNCricinfo.
Rightly so, as Buttler pointed out, Royals were a top-heavy side, which eventually caused their downfall going into their last clash against Kolkata Knight Riders where Pat Cummins’ opening spell blew them open. His move was in a bid to close out games for the franchise from good positions but the move only rather worked out in the encounter against CSK, failing in the others.
"It actually probably came from myself saying I didn't think our team had the right balance. I thought we were lacking a bit of experience in the middle, and I thought we were a bit top-heavy. [We were] losing games and it felt like there were a couple of games we didn't quite close out when we were in good positions, and I felt like if we had had a bit more experience in that position, maybe we would have got over the line,” he concluded.