Cricbuzz Staff •
Jos Buttler believes cricket could become a one-format game in the next 15-20 years. © Getty
Twenty20 cricket’s popularity could slowly signal the end for the other formats of the game, feels England wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler. Speaking to Sky Sports ahead of his side’s T20 encounter against New Zealand in the tri-series, Buttler acknowledged the growth of the sport’s shortest format while asserting the importance of Test cricket at the same time.
“Test cricket is still, for me, the pinnacle of cricket but T20 fills out stadiums and is easy to keep up with and follow,” Buttler said. “Everyone wants things faster these days and things evolve so maybe Twenty20 could have a monopoly on cricket.
“We all love the history of Test cricket – you will never have situations thrown up in T20 that Test cricket can do to you and you will never be tested as a player as you would in Test cricket. It’s a complete test of everything and it would be sad, but as a product T20 is going from strength to strength.”
Buttler, who recently led England in the T20I against Australia, has predicted the sport to turn into a one-format game within the next 15-20 years with T20s ruling the roost. “I feel cricket could become a one-format game in the future – whether that’s soon or in 15 to 20 years,” he said.
Buttler’s own Test career hasn’t taken off unlike his limited-overs career, where he remains a vital cog in the England setup. The 27-year-old’s last Test appearance came in India during England’s visit in 2016-17. With Jonny Bairstow being preferred as the first-choice wicketkeeper, Buttler has recently fallen down the pecking order with Ben Foakes becoming the backup gloveman.
As a result, he has focussed more on making the most out of opportunities around the world in various T20 leagues instead of trying to revive his Test career. “Hopefully the administrators can find a way of making the Test game more popular – it’s awesome and I’d love to be playing in it,” he pointed out.
“(Not making the Ashes squad) was a wake-up call that I have slipped down the ladder in red-ball cricket and white-ball cricket is obviously my strength. I thought if I’m serious about playing red-ball cricket I could give up the white-ball stuff for two years and spend winters playing red ball, but I feel like there are too many opportunities to go down that route.”