Jos Buttler: England 'in good spot' ahead of T20 World Cup opener against Afghanistan

Jos Buttler says England are "chomping at the bit" to start the T20 World Cup but Chris Woakes is unlikely to be risked for their opening match against Afghanistan.

England have laid down a marker in the last month by beating hosts and defending champions Australia twice after a series win in Pakistan, but preparations for Afghanistan on Saturday have been disrupted.

Reece Topley was set for a pivotal role but suffered a tournament-ending ankle injury in freak circumstances on Monday and now a tight quad is set to preclude Woakes' involvement at Perth.

However, Buttler, set for his first major tournament as England captain after replacing Eoin Morgan in June, believes they are primed as they look to unify cricket's two premier limited-overs trophies.

"We're in a good spot," Buttler said. "I think everyone is chomping at the bit to get going now, we've had some really good games over the last 10 matches and played some really good cricket.

"This is very much a new era for the English white-ball team. A lot of them played in the past era but it's very much about looking forward now for this group.

"I think it's really important to be that forward facing sort of team talking about the future a lot and that starts (against Afghanistan). On the eve of the tournament we're very ready."

Woakes is "not somebody you'd take a big risk on" according to Buttler, who was tight-lipped not only on his XI but the balance of his side and whether he would prefer the extra batter or bowler.

If they bolster their batting then Liam Livingstone and Harry Brook will both feature in the middle-order but one may be vulnerable if England go bowler-heavy.

Tymal Mills and Chris Jordan present attractive bowling options at the death although David Willey seems likely to replace fellow left-arm seamer Topley, who suffered ligament damage after standing on a boundary cushion during a fielding drill then landing awkwardly ahead of a warm-up against Pakistan.

"I think we can go in a multitude of ways," Buttler said. "These are good headaches to have. I don't think we're set on one particular way at the minute - and that could change throughout the tournament.

"I think that drives performance on when you've got good players who miss out, it's generally the sign of a team that's going in the right direction."

England were eliminated at the semi-final stage last year after a defeat against New Zealand in the United Arab Emirates, an experience which Buttler said drove home how "ruthless the format is".

While he feels they are well positioned going into this tournament, Buttler sought to dampen expectations as, when asked whether his side are favourites, he replied: "Far from it, to be honest.

"I think we're a dangerous team and we've got a lot of talented players who can win games on their own and that's a huge thing in T20 cricket.

"It's hard to pick favourites - if you had to choose one it's probably Australia in their own conditions and being reigning champions."

As for their first opponents, Afghanistan are coached by former England batter Jonathan Trott and have two players in the top five bowlers in the T20 rankings in spinners Rashid Khan and Mujeeb Ur Rahman.

Buttler singled out leg-spinner Rashid for particular praise as he urged England to be on their guard in the first of five fixtures in a Super 12s group also containing Australia and New Zealand.

"I see them as a really tough opponent," Buttler added. "If you look through their team they've got some fantastic players and any team with Rashid Khan in it in T20 cricket will have a big say.

"We give them huge respect and we look forward to a really competitive game."

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