LONDON (Reuters) – Captain Aaron Finch believes Australia can draw inspiration from their unrivalled tournament record as they plan to take their performances up a notch heading into the business end of the Cricket World Cup.
Australia have won four of the previous five editions of the 50-overs World Cup and are well-placed to reach another semi-finals with five wins from six games so far.
Ahead of Tuesday’s clash against England at Lord’s, Australia know inflicting defeat on their fierce rivals would leave Eoin Morgan’s side sweating over semi-final qualification.
England are chasing their first 50-overs crown and Finch took his chance to heap some pressure on the pre-tournament favourites by emphasising Australia’s winning mentality.
“I think that over the World Cup history, Australia have had a very good history of peaking at the right time,” he told a news conference on Monday.
“Over a lot of that history Australia have played their best cricket under the greatest pressure.
“And that’s a good lesson for everyone, the fact that we’ve got six guys in our squad who were part of the 2015 World Cup win is really valuable.”
Australia’s coaching staff includes former World Cup winners Ricky Ponting, a three-time champion and captain of the triumphant teams of 2003 and 2007, as well as Brad Haddin, the wicketkeeper in 2015.
Finch said the presence of both decorated former players brought a sense of calm to the dressing room.
“We’ve got Ricky Ponting with us, and Brad Haddin, as coaching staff who have won World Cups as well,” he added.
“So it’s just about the shared experience of what you might feel in a knockout game or a high-pressure game.
“Those experienced guys can almost share what you might be feeling, so you can almost be prepared for it before you’re in that situation. That’s invaluable.”
(Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris)