MS Dhoni Has Been A Trendsetter For Emerging Wicketkeeper Captains, Says Jos Buttler
Rajasthan Royals batsman Jos Buttler in action | Sportzpics for BCCI / Pankaj Nangia
Rajasthan Royals batsman Jos Buttler in action | Sportzpics for BCCI / Pankaj Nangia

MS Dhoni Has Been A Trendsetter For Emerging Wicketkeeper Captains, Says Jos Buttler

Jos Buttler, Rajasthan Royals’ English recruit believes the legendary Mahendra Singh Dhoni is the inspiration behind the emergence of wicketkeeper captains in the world’s biggest T20 league, the IPL.

In the ongoing IPL 2021, four out of eight franchises will be captained by wicket-keepers and Jos Buttler feels the credit should go to MS Dhoni for setting the trend.


Jos Buttler: MS Dhoni Has Been A Fantastic Captain And Players Want To Follow In His Footsteps

Besides MS Dhoni, who has been Chennai Super Kings’ skipper since the inaugural edition in 2008, three more glovesmen — KL Rahul (Punjab Kings), Sanju Samson (Rajasthan Royals), and Rishabh Pant (Delhi Capitals) will lead their respective sides in the ongoing IPL.

“I am sure MSD (Dhoni) has something to do with the sixth sense and breeding of wicketkeepers who can captain. He obviously has been a fantastic captain and there are lots of players who want to follow in his footsteps,” Jos Buttler told PTI Bhasha in an exclusive interview.

Jos Buttler. (Image Source: Twitter)
Jos Buttler. (Image Source: Twitter)

Jos Buttler who is himself a wicketkeeper, feels stumpers enjoy an advantage as captains as they get a 360-degree view of the proceedings.

“I think a wicketkeeper has a brilliant view of the game. That can add to your decision-making as you can see first-hand how the wicket is behaving and the way bowlers are bowling,” he said.

Jos Buttler also spoke about the Rajasthan Royals chances in IPL 2021. Rajasthan Royals finished last season at the bottom of the table with 12 points from their 14 matches. Chris Morris, the most expensive player in IPL history, is a vital player for RR. With England pacer Jofra Archer’s availability for IPL 2021 still uncertain, Chris Morris could have to bowl at the death.

Jos Buttler: Rajasthan Royals Have World Class All Rounders Like Ben Stokes And Chris Morris And A New Skipper Sanju Samson

The 30-year-old Englishman expects Sanju Samson to deliver the goods as skipper and termed compatriot Ben Stokes as the X-factor for Rajasthan.

“We have lots of variety in the team this season with some world-class all-rounders like Ben Stokes and Chris Morris and a new captain. Sanju (Samson) is a very exciting player and has a long affiliation with the franchise.

“I am sure he would try and get across that to the team. There will be a lot of passion in his leadership. I strongly believe Ben Stokes will be the X-factor for our team in this season,” said Buttler, who has played 50 Tests, 148 ODIs and 79 T20 matches for England.

The presence of a legend like Kumar Sangakkara as the team’s Director of Cricket will be beneficial for Rajasthan Royals, said the cricketer.

“He (Sangakkara) is a legend and has so much knowledge to share. He has vast experience of international cricket and has played the IPL too. He knows what to expect and it’s a big plus for everyone to have him around,” said Buttler.

Jos Buttler, who captained England in the final two ODIs of the three-match series in India recently in the absence of an injured regular skipper Eoin Morgan, said that outing was a valuable learning experience for him.

“Playing against India in India is always the biggest challenge for England team. I mean playing against the best players and getting used to the conditions. Playing against some young Indian players was a great experience. I have enjoyed playing and captaining against India. I have learnt a lot about myself from that experience,” he said.

Rajasthan Royals batsmen Ben Stokes and Sanju Samson
Rajasthan Royals batsmen Ben Stokes and Sanju Samson Photograph: BCCI/IPL

Ever since international cricket resumed, the players have been forced to stay in bio-bubbles to avoid contracting Covid-19, making it extremely difficult for players to stay fresh and motivated. With India witnessing a surge in COVID-19 cases, the ongoing IPL is also being held behind closed doors.

“Playing without fans and living continuously in bio-bubbles is difficult. You have to learn to live without the energy that the crowd brings to the stadiums in IPL.

“Pressure and excitement are still there but they are not visible. Certain times you have to raise your energy and intensity, which the crowd used to generate earlier,” Jos Buttler maintained.

Rajasthan Royals will open their IPL campaign against Punjab Kings in Mumbai on Monday.

Probable Rajasthan Royals XI: Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler (wk), Sanju Samson (c), Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Shivam Dube, Chris Morris, Shreyas Gopal, Mustafizur Rahman/Jofra Archer/ Andrew Tye, Kartik Tyagi, Jaydev Unadkat