T20 World Cup, Eng vs Afg: ‘He’s thriving with extra responsibility,’ Buttler hails Curran’s attitude

After a convincing win over Afghanistan, England captain Jos Buttler on Saturday praised all-rounder Sam Curran, who took a sensational five-for (5-10), saying that the pacer has a great attitude and always wants to bowl in tough moments.

Curran’s historical five-for (5-10) led England to a five-wicket win over Afghanistan in a Super 12 match of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 at Perth Stadium on Saturday.

The left-arm pacer employed the short ball, alongside the occasional full delivery to great effect to remove Ibrahim Zadran, Usman Ghani, Azmatullah Omarzai, Rashid Khan, Fazalhaq Farooqi and become the first cricketer from England to take a five-for in T20Is.

His performance helped England bow out Mohammed Nabi-led Afghanistan for a meagre total of 112 in 19.4 overs. In reply, England chased down the target with five wickets and 11 deliveries to spare as Liam Livingstone top-scored for the side with an unbeaten 29-ball 21.

“I think he (Curran) has got a great character for that role (death overs bowling). He’s thriving with the extra responsibility and enjoys the tough moments. He demands the ball in those situations which is a great attitude to have. The most pleasing thing about Sam is he always wants to bowl” said England at the post-match presentation.

Apart from their bowling, England were also clinical in fielding and the skipper felt it was a fantastic effort. Buttler, who himself took a blinder, also praised Mark Wood and called him a great asset.

“Fielding is a huge part of this game. It was a fantastic effort in the field,” he said.

“Mark Wood is always fun to keep wicket to, he’s someone who can create catches like that, delighted to hang on to that. He’s very vital. He’s been backing up games and has been a great asset. He’s in a good place and we’ll try to look after him,” he added.

The attacking opener mentioned that the conditions were a bit challenging, so they had to respect the Afghanistan bowlers during the run-chase.

“Felt like the ball swung early, Afghanistan has a talented bowling attack, we were challenged and we had to pay respect to the bowlers. It could have been more fluent but I thought Afghanistan bowled well,” said Buttler.

Talking about the win, the England captain said, “Coming into the tournament, there’s always a few nerves. We’ve been playing a lot of cricket to build up to this point. There’s a lot of anticipation. To get out there and get a win under our belt is fantastic.”

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