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  5. 'Focused': England captain Jos Buttler claims players have moved on from Afghanistan defeat at World Cup 2023

'Focused': England captain Jos Buttler claims players have moved on from Afghanistan defeat at World Cup 2023

Afghanistan lost to England in their previous outing at the World Cup. It was a huge upset in the mega event given that England are the defending champions. They will next face South Africa who are also coming off an upset loss to the Netherlands in their previous game.

Aditya Kukalyekar Written By: Aditya Kukalyekar @adikukalyekar New Delhi Published on: October 20, 2023 17:14 IST
Jos Buttler, World Cup 2023
Image Source : GETTY Jos Buttler

England and South Africa are set to face each other in the 20th match of World Cup 2023 at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Saturday (October 21). Both teams are coming off losses at the hands of unexpected sides. While England went down to Afghanistan in Delhi, South Africa were trumped by the Netherlands in Dharamsala.

More than South Africa, England are in trouble having lost two out of their matches now and cannot afford more than one loss now in the remainder of the tournament. However, their skipper Jos Buttler has claimed that they have moved on from the shock defeat against Afghanistan and the players are now focused on doing well in the upcoming matches.

"We had a few days to let the defeat sink in and moved on and focused. We had some good conversations and the energy and hunger around practice last night was very high," Buttler said ahead of the crucial match. Meanwhile, England are also expected to be boosted with Ben Stokes returning to the side after missing out on three matches due to hip injury. But Buttler kept his cards close to his chest not revealing much about the same.

"I've got so many options within the squad selection, it is always tough, and you're working out the right balance, always venue-dependent as well, so (it has) been a good chance to see the wicket here today and gather a bit more information as well. But obviously, Ben trained really well last night. It is great to see him back. He obviously brings a lot on the field and with his presence and leadership skills as well as someone who is always good to turn to," the England captain added.

South Africa's loss to the Netherlands was a huge one given the kind of form they were in. Even Buttler admitted that he was surprised to see the Proteas going down to the Dutch in the 246-run chase in the rain-curtailed contest. "Yeah, surprised. I think you are always surprised when those kind of things happen. No disrespect to the Netherlands. They played a fantastic game of cricket and deserved to win it. You always have to give credit to the opposition in that instance," Buttler said.

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