sport

Buttler: England behind Cook

Jos Buttler insists the England team is united behind captain Alastair Cook.

Wicketkeeper Buttler has been called up to replace Matt Prior in the line-up to face India in the third Test at Hampshire's Ageas Bowl on Sunday.

And he says he has found an England camp determined to beat India, and desperate to help skipper Cook end both his barren run with the bat, and long run without a Test victory.

\"Morale is not down at all,\" he said. \"Things obviously get built up on the outside. The guys are hurting and disappointed that they are not quite playing the brand of cricket or getting the results they want. But there is an underlying determination from everyone to turn that around.\"

\"Everyone is right behind him (Cook) - he knows what a quality leader he is of everyone, and what a great player he is for England. Everyone is determined to see him get back to his best. It's a great quality he has shown throughout his international career, that determination and doggedness to put things right, to find a way,\" he said.

The Lancashire star is already a familiar face in the England Twenty20 and ODI teams, and he hopes that experience will help when he takes the field on Sunday when the hosts start the match 1-0 down in the five-Test series.

Asked what his emotions are, the 23-year-old said: \"Excitement is probably the main one. I'm obviously delighted to get the call up. It's a proud moment for me, the chance to represent my country in Test cricket.

\"It's a mix of excitement and a few nerves. I think it's good that I know the set-up and the guys, so introductions have been pretty easy. I'm looking forward to training and then getting amongst it.

\"I've had some good days on this ground - my first first-class hundred was on this ground and had an exciting Twenty20 finals day with Somerset as well. Usually when you come here you get a pretty good wicket. I enjoy the ground and I like the place - it will obviously have some special memories for me.\"

Back in May Buttler suggested he was not quite ready for Test cricket and he is trying not to put too much pressure on himself now that he has been selected.

\"Maybe mentally I've got over the fact that I'm closer to playing Test cricket than I thought I was,\" he said. \"My cricket has been going in the right direction - I'm really pleased with the way it is going. I'm probably far from the finished article - I don't think anyone would be at this stage of their career.

\"But I'm delighted to have this chance and I'm determined to enjoy it.

\"I don't think anyone really steps into and sets the world alight straight away. I'm not really expecting to do that. It would be great if I could. It's down to me to remember what I've done to get me this far, and what has helped me in my county career, and in limited overs cricket for England.

"It's a step into the unknown because I've never done it before. It was probably something I didn't think I'd get to so quickly.\"

Watch the third Test between England and India live from 10am on Sunday on Sky Sports 2.