Buttler confident of making semis despite rain woes

The 2010 champions, who have just one win against minnows Afghanistan in the Super 12 stage, now face two tough must win contests against New Zealand and Sri Lanka.
 England captain Jos Buttler
England captain Jos Buttler

MELBOURNE: A washout against Ashes rival Australia and a DLS defeat to Ireland may have made their knockout qualification tougher but England captain Jos Buttler said they are not worried unless it goes ''completely out of control'' in the T20 World Cup.

The 2010 champions, who have just one win against minnows Afghanistan in the Super 12 stage, now face two tough must win contests against New Zealand (Tuesday) and Sri Lanka (Saturday).

Australia, on the other hand, have relatively easier tasks facing Ireland (Monday) and Afghanistan (Friday) in their remaining Group 1 fixtures. Top two teams qualify for the semi-finals.

''Listen, until something's completely out of our control, we won't worry about that. We know we've got two games left to play. We want to win those two games, give ourselves the best chance to get through to the next round,'' Buttler said after their match against Australia was abandoned due to persistent showers at the MCG here on Friday.

As of now, all the six teams of Group 1 are in the fray for a semifinal berth. New Zealand, England, Ireland and Australia have three points each. Sri Lanka and Afghanistan have two apiece with the former having a match in hand. ''Yeah, we'd do well to live up to that one, wouldn't it? For us, we knew, having lost the game against Ireland with three -- the way the format is anyway, every game is pretty much a must win,'' Buttler said.

''Look, we know we need to turn up and play our best cricket, give ourselves the best chance to win the games and give ourselves the best chance to go through to the next round.'' Melbourne is witnessing the wettest October since 1975, forcing cancellation of T20 World Cup matches, but Buttler had no complaints about the situation they find themselves now.

''I don't really have any frustrations. We all want to play full games of crickets. We all do. Naturally, we play a sport that's in the open air, and the elements are a huge part of our game. They affect surfaces we play on. They affect conditions. They're an intriguing bit of what makes the sport really unique,'' he said.

''Now unfortunately we've had two games affected by weather. You don't want to be involved in those games, but it's going to happen wherever you play, or certainly some places you play in the world, you're generally going to be affected by some weather at some point.

Buttler further backed the umpires' decision to call off the match, saying the conditions weren't ''fit to play''.

''They (umpires) had some big concerns, and I think rightly so. The outfield is very wet. There's some areas inside the 30-yard circle which were not fit to play,'' he said.

''So as much as we all want to play cricket and stuff, it has to be safe, and it certainly wasn't that.

''Player safety is really important, and it wasn't fit to play. Whether it's our bowlers or Australia's bowlers, I think that the right call unfortunately was made.'' ''Yeah, it's a shame tonight, especially for everybody involved. Australia against England at the MCG in a must win World Cup match is as big as it gets in your career, and they're the games you want to be involved in,'' Buttler said.

''No matter whatever the result was going to be, it's something you want to experience as a cricket team. You don't know how often those kinds of opportunities will come around. So I think there's an element of sadness that you don't get to, win, lose, or draw, play the match.''

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