Buttler ready to take over if captain Morgan can’t face Afghanistan
The wicketkeeper stood in during the win against the West Indies after his skipper was injured in the field.
Jos Buttler is ready, willing and able to take over as England’s World Cup captain next week but is crossing his fingers he will not be required.
Skipper Eoin Morgan suffered a painful back spasm while fielding in the handsome eight-wicket defeat of the West Indies, joining Jason Roy in the treatment room after he tweaked his left hamstring.
Neither took up their usual positions in the batting order and were sent for scans to determine the extent of their injuries, the results of which have yet to be released.
With England’s next match taking place on Tuesday, when they take on outsiders Afghanistan at Old Trafford, there is every chance vice-captain Buttler will be asked to take the reins from Morgan.
He has done so on six previous occasions, winning four and losing two, but is more than happy to wait for his next chance.
“I would be chuffed but I’d rather Eoin plays,” he said.
“I have played under Eoin for a long time and he’s a fantastic captain and he’s someone I have tried to learn from as vice-captain. We speak a lot about the game, we’ve got similar views so it will be very similar if it was me.”
If drafted Buttler is confident that keeping wicket, maintaining his status as the most destructive batsman in the middle order charge and leading the side would not put too much on his plate.
“If it comes to captaining then it’s a huge honour any time you do it and from behind the stumps you have a really good view of what is going on,” he said.
“It’s down to you to manage and separate the two jobs, for the 10 seconds when you are a wicketkeeper, do that to the best of your ability, then outside of that allow yourself to think about the game.”
Those who are not among the walking wounded will return to training in Manchester on Monday, with spare batsmen James Vince readying himself for a first appearance and all-rounder Moeen Ali also on standby for a recall.
With seamers Chris Woakes and Mark Wood also managing respective knee and ankle problems, Tom Curran will also be hopeful of an outing soon.
“They are ready, absolutely,” Buttler said.
“We spoke about how hard the squad was to pick and now getting in the XI is really competitive, so those guys on the sidelines are fantastic and ready to play.
“It’s a long tournament, lots of games, and it will be a full squad effort. The are other guys who are not even in the 15 who may still come in an play a vital role.”
England are hoping to hear more about Morgan and Roy’s fitness on Sunday but are unlikely to commit themselves to any definitive prognosis before the pair have had the chance of further rest.
“It just looked like Eoin’s back seized up, he couldn’t move well,” added Buttler.
“He’ll have a scan and Jason too, we’ll see how their injuries are and hope for the best.”