Botham's Ashes tales fire up Buttler

2015-07-07 10:55
Ian Botham (Getty Images)

KP makes an Ashes prediction

2015-07-06 14:00

Kevin Pietersen, overlooked by England for this year's Ashes series, has backed Australia to retain the famous urn...

Cardiff - Ian Botham may not appreciate the comparison but there was no doubt Jos Buttler was paying him a compliment when he said listening to the England hero's tales of Ashes past was "like story time with your granddad".

Botham, one of England's greatest all-rounders, reserved many of his best performances for 'old enemy' Australia.

And such was his impact on the 1981 series it was labelled 'Botham's Ashes' after several stunning individual displays with both bat and ball helped turn the series in England's favour.

Botham was invited to give the current England squad a pep talk ahead of the first Test against Australia in Cardiff starting on Wednesday and Buttler lapped up every word.

"It was great," said England wicketkeeper/batsman Buttler. "It was like story time with your granddad, really."

Buttler, who at the age of 24 is not quite two generations removed from the 59-year-old Botham, added: "'Beefy' - everyone sat around listening to stories of the rockstar life he led.

"It was quite different the way he went about it as to our how our preparation has been."

It seems the most pertinent piece of advice that Botham, who relished the big occasion, passed on was to enjoy all the hype that surrounds the Ashes without letting it affect your own game.

"He said you have to understand that is how it is - but the cricket doesn't change," Buttler explained. "You have to enjoy it, and embrace the Ashes."

With England bidding to recover the Ashes after a 5-0 thrashing in Australia in 2013/14, the scale of the task ahead has enthused Buttler.

"You always dream of playing in this series that is always talked about," he said.

"It's going to be a huge challenge for me personally and the team - but it's something you want to be a part of, to test yourselves in these situations."

But even if this season ends up being 'Buttler's Ashes', the kind of exploits that Botham used to enjoy mid-Test won't be an option for the present-day England team, given that rest days have long since been abolished.

"His (Botham's) favourite stories seem to involve rest days in Tests ... they seemed to be the best invention ever," said Buttler.

Read more on:    ashes  |  ian botham  |  cricket


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Thursday, 22 August 2019
England v Australia, , Leeds 12:00
Wednesday, 04 September 2019
England v Australia, , Manchester 12:00
Thursday, 12 September 2019
England v Australia, , London 12:00
Previous Results

Date Match Result

Who will win the 2019 edition of the Ashes?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.