Sam Curran has ‘always looked up to England’s biggest superstar’ Ben Stokes
Sam Curran admitted he has idolised Ben Stokes for some time and England head coach Matthew Mott believes the left-armer can carve out a similar legacy to that of his role model.
England’s premier all-rounder Stokes was once again the man of the moment with his unbeaten 52 off 49 balls helping his side to a tense five-wicket victory over Pakistan in Sunday’s T20 World Cup final.
Curran often shines in the heat of battle but the 24-year-old confessed to being relieved he was not needed at the crease as Stokes kept his composure to anchor a successful pursuit of 138 at the MCG.
“I probably wouldn’t have loved being in the middle when we needed that target, he made it look very easy,” Curran said. “I’ve looked up to him for so long, he’s got so much guts and passion.
“He just does it time and time again. That’s what you strive to do, be there in the moments of when the crunch time is and that gives you inspiration and confidence in the dugout when he’s out in the middle.
“There’s no hiding he’s the biggest superstar in the English game. I guess for all the guys in the county system when Stokesy turns up for Durham it gives you a buzz and the guys look up to him.
“There’s so many different competitions and leagues and those crucial moments are when you want to stand up and I’ve always looked up to him.
“Hopefully he can keep on playing for a long time, I can keep learning from him and picking his brain.”
While Stokes has been the central figure in both of his ODI and T20 World Cup final victories, Curran has been key to England becoming the first men’s side to unify both global titles.
He was named player of the tournament for his 13 wickets in six matches, averaging a breakthrough every 10.4 balls while his control was also excellent as he went at just 6.52 an over.
His three for 12 in the showpiece, in which he conceded just seven runs across the 17th and 19th overs, went a long way to restricting Pakistan to what proved to be a subpar 137 for eight.
And Mott feels there is no limit to what Curran can achieve as a genuine all-rounder.
“He’s always chipping away,” Mott said. “When the pressures is on, he just wants the ball in his hand or wants the bat in his hand and wants to try and win the game for his country. He’s been special.
“Some of the overs he’s bowled – pressure overs – have gone for a ridiculous five or six runs, when they could have gone for 14 or 15. And they’ve actually turned the tide of games.
“There’s no ceiling for him. He’s a great player. His batting has got more in it as well. I think he’s one of the sweetest timers of the ball we’ve got and he’s obviously a gun in the field as well.
“He’s going to be a very, very good player for England and could go down as one of the white-ball greats in my opinion.”
Curran feels getting his hands on his first piece of global silverware has just whetted his appetite for more.
“I can call myself a world champion now which is pretty cool,” he added. “Any time you win a tournament and get that extra bit of success you want more.”
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