ICC Cricket World Cup

Plunkett optimistic about England’s revival against Bangladesh

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England have already experienced two contrasting results in the early stage of the World Cup: their convincing victory against South Africa was followed by a wake-up call against Pakistan. Plunkett, who missed out against Pakistan on Monday, believes his team will come back strongly when they take on Bangladesh in Cardiff.

“Maybe there were a few nerves at Trent Bridge,” Plunkett said. “We were not at our best and we let ourselves down in the field. We have had a couple of days off. Hopefully we can start again fresh.”

Against Pakistan at Trent Bridge, England had to deal with a crowd that was vocal in their support for Sarfaraz Ahmed’s men. Against Bangladesh, they can again expect a good section of the crowd to support their opponents. Plunkett backed the players to dig into their experience of playing in big tournaments across the world and not succumb to mental games. 

“Pakistan are pretty good like that – they can get niggly. Similarly Bangladesh, India, they’re good at doing that, [like] appealing quite a lot. It’s just the way they like to play their cricket.

“But we’ve played in big competitions, guys have played around the world – at the Indian Premier League and Big Bash in front of big crowds – so it shouldn’t be too much. It’s just about getting involved in the game, taking out the crowd and the other team to just try and do your job.”

Bangladesh, who ended England’s World Cup campaign in 2015, announced themselves with a resounding win in their opening game against South Africa. Plunkett believed the result wasn’t a shock, adding that their opponents on Saturday have a strong set of players.

“We saw Bangladesh beat South Africa and it wasn’t a shock defeat,” Plunkett said. “I remember when they beat England way back when and it was a shock defeat. But there are no real shock defeats in this competition. They’re a strong squad.”

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