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Ben Stokes is the ‘champion under pressure’: Stephen Fleming

Melbourne : Former New Zealand skipper Stephen Fleming termed England all-rounder and Test skipper Ben Stokes as the “champion under pressure” following the 31-year-old scoring a match-winning unbeaten 52 in the ICC T20 World Cup final against Pakistan at MCG to take his side to title triumph on Sunday night.

Despite the pressure of the packed iconic MCG stadium and a sea of Pakistani supporters rooting for Babar Azam and his side, Stokes came up with 49-ball unbeaten 52 and also took the wicket of middle-order batter Iftikhar Ahmed to help England lift their second T20 World Cup trophy in style.

Fleming, who is also IPL side Chennai Super Kings’ head coach, praised Stokes’ knock on ESPNcricinfo, saying, “He is a big presence; he is a big personality; he is a big winner. Those are the key ingredients when you talk about a good to a great player.

What he is doing is forging a career where he is there in key moments; he wins Test matches, he was there today, he’d been in some unbelievable battles and you’d back him most times to win them.”So, his temperament is so tested and comes through every time that you have got to say he is a champion under pressure.

And there’s not many that rise to that occasion as much as he seems to do; he gets in a position where he is the main man and everyone around him feeds off that. He has done it yet again for England,” he added.

England all-rounder Moeen Ali also praised Sam Curran, who emerged ‘Player of the match’ and ‘Player of the series’. On Sunday, the 24-year-old Curran took three wickets, conceding just 12 runs in his four overs.The all-rounder aggregated 13 wickets in the tournament at an average of 11.38.

“Very proud, he is a brilliant young player.He has been around for a while now. He loves the big occasion, and he loves when the pressure is on, and he is only getting better and better as he has gotten a run in the team, which is really important for him.

I believe he is still got a lot more to come with the ball and in particular with the bat,” Moeen told Star Sports.



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