Jack Leach inspired by Ben Stokes’ World Cup heroics before Ashes heist

first_imgJack Leach, who was involved in a 76-run partnership that saw England home in front of a raucous Leeds crowd, revealed that Ben Stokes’ knock-in ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019 final had inspired him.Leach said that Stokes’ presence at the other end gave him hope for an improbable win in the Headingley game.Stokes played a memorable knock of 135 runs to help England clinch Leeds Test by one wicket and keep the series alive. Leach played a vital supporting role despite making a single run in the historic win at Headingley.England spinner regularly paused to wipe his glasses clean before taking the strike, earning a standing ovation from the Headingley fans every time he survived an over.”Obviously when I first went in, he was going to have a lot of the strike, being ready to run two, and I just broke it down into the balls that I had to face. It was a special feeling,” he told Sky Sports.”Stokesy – unbelievable, like nothing I’ve ever seen before. The crowd – insane. To be part of that at the end was an incredible feeling.”Leach hailed Ben Stokes as he revealed that watching England vice-captain’s Player-of-the-Match performance in the World Cup final inspired him ahead of his Headingley knock.”I was watching the World Cup final as a fan and that showed that anything is possible,” Leach said. “Ben Stokes was at the centre of that as well. Maybe Ben Stokes has to be at the centre of all things that are possible. He was just unbelievable.”advertisementAlso See:last_img read more

Klopp: Napoli can win Champions League

first_imgLiverpool boss Jurgen Klopp says Napoli can win the Champions League, while backing the Reds to bounce back from their opening defeat in the competition.Defending champions Liverpool were beaten 2-0 by hosts Napoli in a controversial Group E opener on Tuesday.Dries Mertens converted an 82nd-minute penalty after Jose Callejon appeared to go down under minimal contact from Andy Robertson at Stadio San Paolo, where the referee’s decision was ratified by a VAR check, and Fernando Llorente sealed the win in stoppage time. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career Klopp, whose side lost 1-0 to Napoli in last season’s group stage, was frustrated with the penalty decision afterwards and when asked about the Champions League chances of Carlo Ancelotti’s side, he said: “They can win the competition, that’s how it is.”If you have a good plan, if you have good players, which is what they obviously have, then they can win the competition. We experienced that you don’t have to be the best team in the world to win the Champions League.”You have to be in the right moment, you need to be lucky in some situations and when there’s only two guys in the room that think it’s a penalty you still have to accept that’s a penalty, but that’s all. They can win the competition, of course.”Klopp was pressed as to whether Napoli were fresher and finished stronger than Liverpool due to Serie A starting later than the Premier League, and the German was not happy.”Tonight, the questions are really a challenge, to be honest,” Klopp said. “I think the guy from Sky Italia asked me or told me Napoli was much better than us. I didn’t see that game, so I don’t know exactly where he was when the game happened.”But now you say we were tired. Who had the cramps? Who was on the ground? Liverpool players or Napoli players? After the 2-0 they looked fresher than us, after the 1-0 they looked fresher than us – that’s normal. You have a boost. But there was no fresher team on the pitch. There was no physical problem apart from the normal physical problems in a game like this, which is very intense [because] both teams fight hard and all that stuff. It’s not a physical problem tonight.”We have to finish the situations off. How everybody is in life, you need positive moments and you can run forever. We didn’t have really positive moments tonight. They obviously got the second air, so they could go again. That’s normal, but that was not the reason.”Klopp added: “I hope it [the result] is not decisive. Give us at least a few more games to change the table. In the moment it looks like Napoli’s through, but we still will be playing. We will not stop.” Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more