Advertisement

Sydney Thunder sign Buttler for BBL|07

Inventive gloveman to turn out in lime green for first six matches before England's Gillette ODI series against Australia

Dynamic wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler will return to the KFC Big Bash League after Sydney Thunder confirmed they've signed the Englishman for this summer's tournament.

Buttler, who played five games for the Melbourne Renegades in BBL|03, is expected to be available for the first six games of the tournament before England's one-day international and T20 campaigns against Australia and New Zealand.

The 27-year-old follows in the footsteps of Eoin Morgan and James Vince as England internationals to represent the Thunder in recent seasons.

Root, Buttler take England to 310

"I'm really excited. I've played in the BBL once before, ahead of England's last ODI tour to Australia," said Buttler.

"I've watched the competition go from strength to strength to become one of the best competitions in the world. The crowds are fantastic and there's a big family emphasis which creates a great atmosphere.

"Eoin Morgan is a good friend, he had two seasons with the club and he spoke really highly of everyone and said I'd have a brilliant time.

"I'm excited to get stuck in and make some friendships. One of the great things about these tournaments is meeting new players and learning from guys and creating friendships all over the world."

2014: Buttler rockets to half-century

England's first-choice wicketkeeper in ODIs and T20s, Buttler was displaced by Jonny Bairstow as the Test side's gloveman in 2015 and most recently played three matches as a specialist batsman on England's Test tour of India last year.

Up until early 2016 he had England's three fastest one-day hundreds to his name and the inventive right-hander is expected to resume his spot behind the stumps for the Gillette ODI series against Australia following the Magellan Ashes.

The five-match ODI series gets underway on January 14 at the MCG. The Thunder's sixth match is against Adelaide Strikers on January 7 while the BBL final is on January 25.

Sydney Thunder director of cricket Michael Hussey believes Buttler's versatility will give the BBL|05 champions plenty of options this season.

"We're very excited to have Jos as part of the team," said Hussey.

"He's a quality player who provides us with plenty of flexibility. He can bat at the top of the order like he does for the Mumbai Indians (in the Indian Premier League) and also in the middle order.

"We've done a lot of homework and asked around and all the feedback we've heard is that he's a fantastic character that will add a lot to the dressing room.

"We know we're going to lose him for the second half of the season but we have a strategy in place for that. I feel that we're well placed to start the tournament well and it's important to get a few wins on the board early as it can get pretty close late on."

The Thunder will announce a replacement international for Buttler for the back-end of the BBL season in the coming weeks. With 16 players now on their books for BBL|07, the Sydney side have two remaining spots on their roster.

Sydney Thunder squad: Shane Watson (c), Fawad Ahmed, Aiden Blizzard, Jos Buttler (OS), Pat Cummins, Callum Ferguson, Ryan Gibson, Chris Green, Jay Lenton, Usman Khawaja, Mitchell McClenaghan (OS), Arjun Nair, Clint McKay, Kurtis Patterson, Ben Rohrer, Gurinder Sandhu. ACT & Regional NSW Rookie: Blake Macdonald.