After England made it through a tough position in the league stage of ICC World Cup 2019, pacer Liam Plunkett credited the Indian Premier League for preparing the current crop of English players to be better equipped to adapt to the pressure of do-or-die matches.

Leading to the ICC World Cup 2019, England were considered outright favourites to win the tournament. But, a couple of losses to Sri Lanka and Pakistan saw them stuck in a tricky position, requiring to win their last two league matches to qualify for the semi-final. The hosts held their nerve and rallied on to beat India and New Zealand to qualify for the top four.

Plunkett said, “It’s a matter of how you deal with pressure, it’s not a bad thing that it’s there. People can thrive on it, people step out there and enjoy those moments. Other people have played under pressure, they’ve played in IPL and competitions around the world.”

As quoted by IANS, the English bowler also said the defeats in the league games have made them more determined and they are feeling much more confident going into the all-important semifinal against Australia.

He pointed, “I think those defeats have made us stronger. We had a few bad games and went away from our style of cricket, but I feel like we’ve caught that in time. We’re back to playing our best brand of cricket and we can still improve. I feel like we had a wobble at the right time, a bit of a blip, and it had made us stronger. How we’re feeling right now going into this semi-final, we’d have taken it at the start of the competition.”

He also said that in a big tournament like the World Cup it becomes necessary for the players to enjoy and get into the game as soon as possible. He further talked about how traditional rivalry always comes into effect whenever they play Australia. “Australia is a game that gets the juices flowing. We’ve performed really well in the last two games. Even though we were dominant in those games, we feel like we’re stepping up a gear as well. We’re in a good place,” he said.

(With IANS inputs)