'There are always people who say things': Liam Livingstone on leaving IPL struggles behind

Published on Jun 22, 2022 06:53 PM IST

Liam Livingstone finally showcased his big-hitting abilities in the 2022 IPL after being unable to do so in previous editions of the tournament. 

Liam Livingstone smashed 437 runs at a very impressive strike-rate of 182.08(PTI)
Liam Livingstone smashed 437 runs at a very impressive strike-rate of 182.08(PTI)

Liam Livingstone had long been seen as one of England's most talented batters, with the ability to clear boundaries with ease and score at high rates throughout the innings. The biggest criticism of Livingstone, however, had been that he was never able to replicate this in the Indian Premier League (IPL), struggling at that stage in the last three years.

In 2022, playing for a Punjab Kings team which seemed to be built in his aggressive image, the IPL finally saw the best of Liam Livingstone as he racked up 437 runs at a very impressive strike-rate of 182.08. Having been the most expensive overseas player at Rs. 11.5 crore in the mega-auction, it was important for Livingstone to live up to his billing — and so he did, with the second-most sixes in the tournament with 34 behind countryman Jos Buttler, including a mammoth 117-meter strike against Gujarat Titans.

Livingstone said that he felt he had hit rock bottom with his performances in the tournament before this season. "I don't think it could have gone any worse to be honest. There was only one way and that was up. I hadn't really had too much opportunity before but there's always people who say certain things,” he told ESPNCricinfo. “It's the biggest tournament in the world, so it was nice to be able to do well. It was nice to finally get the monkey off my back about not being able to do it in the IPL."

Livingstone has now become a fixture of the English limited overs set-up, his intent and power-hitting fitting in perfectly with the style the England management seeks from batters such as Jonny Bairstow, Jason Roy, and Jos Buttler. He is also a handy spinner, making him a favourite to make it to the squad for this year's T20 World Cup and next year's ODI World Cup as well.

"It was nice to have a clear role. We go away and play in the IPL so that we can become accustomed to their conditions and that ultimately will help England in a World Cup next year. Any experience you get around the world with World Cups coming up is a great thing to have so I really enjoyed it," he said.

Livingstone has been in top form as England have toured the Netherlands for an ODI series this month, including a 66*(22) in the first ODI as England scored 498, setting all sorts of record along the way. His ability to score at a strike-rate of 300 is almost unique in world cricket, and England fans will hope the 28-year-old is certain to terrorize bowlers in limited overs for many years to come.

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