Jos Buttler has rejected the suggestion that England have prioritised white-ball cricket over Tests with their rotation policy as they prepare to face India in a Twenty20 series.
Buttler is back in India ahead of the start of the five-match series on Friday, having returned home for a rest period that covered the final three matches of the recent Test series.
Joe Root’s men slumped to a 3-1 defeat after winning the first game.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Buttler was one of several key players who was rotated but he does not believe Eoin Morgan’s white-ball side has been treated with undue preference by selectors.
The need for bio-secure bubbles denied Morgan the use of any Test players for a significant chunk of last year’s English summer and Buttler believes the chance to tune up ahead of the T20 World Cup in India later this year is too good to overlook.
“Chris Silverwood (England head coach), Joe (Root) and Eoin and the ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) have worked closely together to balance things as best they can in what is an incredibly difficult situation,” said Buttler.
“And it makes complete sense to be here in India ahead of a World Cup that will be played in these conditions.
“This is probably the last time we will have a full-strength squad available to play as best we can in this series against what is an excellent India side in their own conditions.”
Buttler is one of a handful of cross-format regulars who could be involved in the latter stages of the Indian Premier League, which starts next month.
The IPL final takes place on May 30, three days before the first Test against New Zealand at Lord’s, and could involve Buttler, Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer, all of whom play for Rajasthan Royals.
Buttler accepts the idea of missing the Test is “far from perfect” but believes the IPL has a major role to play in helping England win the T20 World Cup.
“We all know the benefits of the IPL,” he said. “The tournament is the biggest in the whole of cricket in terms of money and careers can be short.
“But with the experience you gain there are so many pluses to the IPL and I think that has been quite obvious in the upturn in the white-ball game in England.”