Why England captain Jos Buttler mouthed off after being dismissed in the second ODI against Bangladesh
Bangladesh won the second ODI to level the series 1-1 but their victory was marred by the ugly scenes that followed England captain Jos Buttler’s dismissal. The lbw decision was overturned on review and before Buttler left, wild celebrations from the Bangladesh players resulted in the England captain mouthing off.
In the post-match press conference, the England captain admitted he was “disappointed” in the way Bangladesh celebrated. He said: “It wasn’t easy batting early on, we bowled fantastically, a really good bowling performance. I was just disappointed in the way they celebrated, it’s an emotional game. Mainly, the way they celebrated by running towards me and giving me a bit of a send-off.“
Elaborating about the celebration, Buttler admitted that he thought it was “little bit over the top” before adding that he didn’t mind them celebrating.
"I thought it was a little bit over the top. I don't mind guys celebrating just together. I know that's obviously a very passionate cricket country and the players are very passionate and I have got no problem with that,” he added. “I was just a little bit disappointed in the fashion they celebrated. I don't mind them celebrating a wicket but to run and celebrate in my face Rightly, they are happy to get a wicket but there is no need to run in someone’s face and celebrate.”
He also admitted that he could have just walked away and admitted that he will try to keep levelheaded going forward.
"Maybe in hindsight, I could just walk away but it is what it is. It's certainly much more emotional as captain and you try to react, but it's something I will learn if I do it much more. It's something I will try to improve on, trying to keep levelheadedness, not letting your emotions get too high or too low," Buttler said.
After being put in to bat, Bangladesh put on 238/8 thanks largely to Mahmudullah’s 75 and captain Mashrafe Mortaza’s cameo. The total didn’t look huge but after picking up four England wickets inside the first 10 overs, three of which belonged to Mortaza, the hosts were on top.
Buttler led the fightback for the visitors and his partnership with Jonny Bairstow looked like it was taking the game away from Bangladesh but the dismissal of the latter followed by the swift removal of all-rounder Moeen Ali meant the hosts were back on top.
But the endearing memory from this match will be what happened in the first ball of the 28th over and what followed thereafter. Taskin Ahmed, who had already got rid of the dangerous Bairstow, began his fifth over with a ball that was angling in and Buttler, who walked across his stumps, missed it completely.
Although it was given Not Out, Bangladesh reviewed immediately and looked confident. Upon review, the ball which pitched outside off and hit him in line, was going on to hit the top of middle stump and the decision was promptly overturned.
When it all kicked off
The decision sparked wild celebrations from the Bangladesh players and Buttler, who was walking away, made his way towards the Bangladeshi players and had to be stopped by the umpire who stepped in and sent him on his way.
While the celebrations were over the top, it is still unclear whether there were any words exchanged by the fielders. That could have been what sent the usually calm Buttler over the edge and made him mouth off before he left the field.
In a matter of seconds following the decision being reversed, things heated up and even forced Chris Woakes to get involved. Surprisingly, captain Mortaza led the way and gestured towards the dismissed batsman instead of being the experienced player and calming the situation.
Although Bangladesh ended up winning the game, this is not the first time that the celebrations of Bangladesh’s players have sparked controversy. While winning an ODI against an in-form England side might be good for the country, it shouldn’t come at the cost of the spirit of the game, with players taunting the opposition following their dismissal.
Perhaps the nature of the celebration had something to do with the way in which Bangladesh collapsed and lost the first ODI which they should have won, or the growing pressure put on them by the home fans after series wins over Pakistan, South Africa and India. Whatever the reason, the sooner Bangladesh remove that part of their game, the better it would be for them as they grow into a formidable ODI nation, at least at home.