Jos Buttler "open" to missing Ashes amid ongoing Covid uncertainty in Australia

Jos Buttler has confessed that he may not make himself available for selection for The Ashes in Australia in December.

The England wicketkeeper-batsman expressed his concern over the stringent quarantine rules in the country which may force English players to go without seeing their families for months.

England play in the UAE for the Twenty20 World Cup immediately before the tour of Australia, meaning that players involved in both events, of which Buttler would be one, would potentially be without their loved ones for three months.

Buttler has already withdrawn from the rest of the IPL competition which is also taking place in the UAE in September for family reasons.

Not only is he missing the franchise tournament, but the 30-year-old has revealed that he may not play in the latter Tests of this summer's series against India as he expects the birth of his second child.

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Speaking to the Sunday Times, Buttler seemed torn about the decision but recognised that sometimes cricket has to take a backseat, particularly given the global events of the past 18 months.

He said: "One of the challenges is working out where the line is where you say I can't do that.

"I've sacrificed a lot for cricket and my wife and family have sacrificed a lot.

"You have to be open to saying no. It would be incredibly disappointing if some players feel like they can't do it, but we're in a world at the moment where that is a possibility."

A number of England players have discussed their unease about being away from family for such an extended period, with the England and Waled Cricket Board (ECB) seeking to clarify the situation with Cricket Australia.

Currently, Australia's borders are closed to internationals as Covid as the government seeks to limit any large outbreaks of Covid. Returning Australian citizens are required to complete a mandatory 14-day quarantine period in a hotel.

Speaking about the existing restrictions, Buttler said: "Covid is incredibly challenging for everyone and Australia has a very strict policy in how they've tried to deal with it.

"Until we get more information about what it [the Australia tour] might look like, it's impossible to know what decision you're making."

Buttler is referring to the bio-bubbles in which England players have spent so much of the last year. Such bubbles require the players to be confined to their hotel outside of playing and practising hours, and away from family members.

There has been some backlash to the possibility of the English cricketers being given special treatment on arrival into the country, given the large amount of Australians and foreigners who haven't been allowed to see their families over the course of the pandemic.

Buttler and England return to action on Wednesday for the third Test against India at Headingley. Chris Silverwood's team are looking to restore parity in the series after collapsing on the final day at Lord's in the previous match.

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