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  5. It goes against everything..: Jos Buttler expresses concern regarding Dharamsala outfield ahead of ENG vs BAN

It goes against everything..: Jos Buttler expresses concern regarding Dharamsala outfield ahead of ENG vs BAN

England captain Jos Buttler wasn't in full support of the decision to play at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala amid fears regarding the sandy outfield. Since the Mujeeb ur Rahman incident in the first game at the venue in the ongoing World Cup, the outfield of the ground is under the scanner.

Edited By: Anshul Gupta @oyegupta_ New Delhi Published on: October 09, 2023 16:26 IST
England cricket team posed ahead of their second World Cup
Image Source : GETTY England cricket team posed ahead of their second World Cup 2023 match against Bangladesh

The outfield at the picturesque HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala has come under the scanner since the incident with Afghanistan mystery spinner Mujeeb ur Rahman in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023. Mujeeb's foot while diving during Bangladesh's innings went into the sandy outfield and the Afghan spinner was lucky to escape injury, as admitted by the team head coach Jonathan Trott. Now, ahead of the second game at the venue, England skipper Jos Buttler has expressed his concerns over the outfield.

The pictures that have emerged of the outfield, which has been under repair for more than a year now, didn't give a good look and Buttler labelled it 'poor' in the pre-match press conference despite it being cleared by an ICC independent pitch consultant Andy Atkinson. had inspected the outfield on Sunday and is "comfortable" with it - as is match referee Javagal Srinath.

"I think it's poor, in my own opinion. I think any time you're talking about being careful diving, or maybe being careful when you're fielding, it goes against everything you want to be as a team.

"You want to dive through a row of houses to save a run. That's obviously not ideal, the way the surface is, the outfield. But we won't use it as an excuse. We'll adapt to it. But certainly, if you feel like you're having to hold yourself back, it's not a place you want to be as a team, or as a player, or in a World Cup match," he added. Earlier, the India-Australia Test in March was moved from the venue to Indore since the outfield wasn't ready at that point.

Buttler was of a view that the players might lose their instinct while fielding as diving and running around comes naturally while saving a run or a boundary, especially in the deep.

England lost their tournament opener against New Zealand in a pretty one-sided affair and would hope to storm back into the tournament with a thumping win against Bangladesh, who won their first game at the very same venue. 

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