England all-rounder Moeen Ali was elated to be able to put in a Player of the Match performance in his team’s 45-run win over Pakistan in the second T20I of the three-match T20I series on Sunday (July 18) at Emerald Headingley Stadium in Leeds.
After being asked to bat at No.4, Moeen played a blistering knock of a 16-ball 36 to set the tone for England to post 200 in the 20 overs before taking two wickets to help the host beat Pakistan by 45 runs in the second T20I to level the three-match T20I series in Leeds on Sunday.
Moeen, after England’s T20I series-leveling victory over Pakistan, admitted that his role in England’s T20I team is bits and pieces, but insisted that he is happy to contribute to the side in any way, though, said spending time on the bench is frustrating for him.
Speaking at the post-match conference on Sunday, Ali said: “I’ve not really spoken to Morgan about it (my role). He said earlier in the summer that he wanted to see other players like Livingstone. The role I have is bits and pieces, but sometimes I’ll pop up the order.”
He continued, “I do see myself as a utility player - if needed I’ll go up the order, if not I can still contribute from down the order. It’s about staying confident and doing well when your chance comes.”
The left-hander said it was great to get the opportunity to bat up the order in the second T20I wherein he cracked six fours and one six in his knock of 36 off 16 balls in Leeds.
He added, “Getting an opportunity up the order is great. When you go up the order you have the chance to bat in the powerplay, and I had a nice partnership with Jos Buttler to take it to the bowlers.”
The 34-year-old also revealed that he focused on giving the ball a good rip, saying he was lucky to have been asked to bowl when the track was turning on Sunday.
The spinner further added, “I really tried to spin the ball, and the other two spinners were really great and I was lucky enough to bowl when the wicket was turning.”
The all-rounder said 2021 has been a frustrating year for him so far having batted only thrice in T20Is while bowling a total of 23 balls but said he has now learned how to deal with such a situation.
Moeen further said, “Of course it can be frustrating. Also have to take in the fact that I’ve come on the back of a very nice IPL, and you don’t want to lose that confidence.”
He signed off, “Sometimes in the past, I might have let it mentally affect me - in terms of not playing - but now, with me older and wiser, it’s just about playing well and feeling more confident. It’s not been easy, the whole summer I think I’ve played 9 times. You just wanna keep playing and keep finding form.”
(With Sportscafe Inputs)