IPL made me a better player - Lendl Simmons
West Indies batsman Lendl Simmons credited his performance in the semi-final of the ICC World Twenty 20 against India at the Wankhede Stadium to the Indian Premier League (IPL) where he has been associated with the Mumbai Indians team.
Chasing a target of 193, West Indies were staring down the barrel at 19 for two after losing Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels early.
However, a 97-run stand for the third wicket between Simmons and Johnson Charles put the chase on track following which Andre Russell played a lovely cameo to take West Indies home in 19.4 overs and secured a place in the final.
"Playing in the IPL has made be a better player,” said Simmons after the game.
"On these pitches, you adjust to different strokes and I think I read it well.
"Before the game I felt a bit of pressure , but when I entered to bat I had a clear idea of what I wanted to do because we already had a plan to chase the target.”
The innings of Simmons had its share of fortune too when he was caught a couple of times off no-balls and the 31-year-old believed luck is an important factor in this format especially.
"Every cricketer has a day and this was mine - I had luck on my side and things went the way we wanted it."
The only team that stands between West Indies and the World T20 trophy now is England, who they will be facing in the finals at the Eden Gardens on 3rd April.
When the two teams locked horns in the group stage, England were blown away by a special century from Chris Gayle but Eoin Morgan’s men bounced back really well winning the remaining games to make it to the final.
Despite the success, Simmons warned the team against complacency and is hopeful of clinching the title for the second time when they face England.
"We shouldn't be over confident. We have to go to Kolkata and analyse the situation of the game when that comes.
"Conditions will be different, I am sure. It won't be a perfect batting track."
Meanwhile, West Indies captain Darren Sammy said the team drew inspiration from the Under-19 team which won the 50-over World Cup in January.
Sammy also lauded the West Indies Women’s team for reaching the finals of the ICC Women’s World T20 after defeating New Zealand Women in the semi-final.
"It's a big step.
"We came here on a mission - we were inspired by the Under-19s boys earlier this year, and the ladies did brilliantly to win [their semi-final against New Zealand].
"We now have two West Indian teams in the finals and I know that means a lot to the Caribbean people.
"The men's side have been going through a lot - we all know what happened just before the tournament - and we still feel it's this West Indies team and this coaching staff versus everybody else."
West Indies and England have played each other in 13 games in the shortest format with the Caribbean team winning nine out of them.
© Cricket World 2016