Jos Buttler praised the innings of James Vince against Australia claiming it shows the depth of the England squad going into the ICC World Cup.
On his home turf at the Ageas Bowl Hampshire’s Vince top scored for the hosts with 64 but it wasn’t enough to prevent them falling to a 12-run defeat.
Vince and his fellow Hampshire team-mate Liam Dawson are unlikely to be named in the side for the opening game of the tournament against South Africa at Lords on Thursday.
Buttler standing in as captain for the injured Eoin Morgan believes squad players will have an important part to play in England’s fortunes.
He said: ‘James played really nicely and guys from outside the 15 have merited selection as well. This has been a strength of ours for the last few years.
‘The guys are really pushing each other from within.
‘We know what a class player James is and it was good to see him perform at this level.
‘As a team we never like losing and reflecting on the day we were pretty good but weren’t quite up to the mark.
‘We were probably ready for the tournament to start yesterday and we are all chomping at the bit.’
Vince batting at three, shared in four valuable partnerships with Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Moeen Ali.
Unarguably his 71-run fourth wicket partnership with Buttler (52 off 31 balls) was the most destructive.
Like most people in the ground Vince watched in awe as his partner at the other end produced a typical swashbuckling innings.
He laid into Nathan Coulter-Nile crashing three fours and two sixes as he plundered 24 runs from a single over.
Coulter-Nile got his revenge next over when he forced a mistake from his nemesis and had him caught.
Vince continued to accumulate runs with his trademark cover drives and clips through mid-wicket.
England were left needing 101 off 97 balls when Vince was out caught by Nathan Lyons at short third man off the bowling of Jason Behrendorff.
Despite the efforts of Chris Woakes (40 off 44 balls) England fell short.
Earlier a century from Steve Smith (116) had guided Australia to a total of 297 for five off their 50 overs.
Both Smith and David Warner, returning to international action after their ban for ball tampering, were given a frosty welcome by the sizeable crowd.
They were booed onto and off the pitch with a number of fans waving sandpaper at them.
Buttler admitted the England players didn’t get involved.
He added: ‘I don’t think any of our guys get that stuck in verbally. Most of the guys just want to play cricket. There will always be a few words on the field.'
A bigger issue for England was a couple of injury scares, particularly opening bowler Mark Wood who left the field with a foot problem midway through an over.
Dawson also picked up a cut to his hand fielding and didn’t bat.
‘If it had been a World Cup game Liam would have batted,’ said Buttler.
‘It was just precautionary and we didn't want to take any chances.’