IPL 2018: Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes to return home after KKR clash
The English duo of Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes will be playing their last game for the Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2018, against the Kolkata Knight Riders on Tuesday (May 15). The two will fly back to England to join the Test squad for the series against Pakistan.
Jos Buttler has been in a rich vein of form in the IPL this year, scoring five back-to-back fifties for the Royals at the top of the order. He scored an unbeaten 94 off 53 balls against the Mumbai Indians in the side's previous game.
Ben Stokes, the most expensive player in the auctions this year, could not replicate his form from last year when he was the Man of the Tournament with the Rising Pune Supergiant. He scored 185 runs and took five wickets in the 13 games before the KKR clash.
The English Selectors, under new head Ed Smith, chose a 12-man squad for the first Test scheduled to start next week. The Pakistan side is currently playing a one-off Test against Ireland, the latter's first Test match ever.
"Jos Buttler is an outstanding talent, who is already a central part of England's white-ball teams. The selection panel feels that this is the perfect moment to reintroduce Jos to Test cricket, where he has already enjoyed some success, including a stint playing as a specialist batsman at number seven. Jos is playing with great confidence and flair, and he will bring unique qualities to the Test team", Smith said about Buttler.
The 27-year-old Buttler last played a Test against India on their tour to the subcontinent in 2016. He had made his debut against the same opposition at home in 2014.
Stokes, on the other hand, played his last game against New Zealand, his country of birth, after having made a return to the side from suspension, after having been charged with affray in September last year.