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Plunkett hits the ground running

England Lions

Liam Plunkett speaks exclusively to ECBtv after helping England to a win ahead of the First Test

Liam Plunkett was grateful for the overs afforded to him as chalked up four wickets for England Lions in their second tour match in New Zealand.

The Lions had the better of a drawn two-day warm-up game against New Zealand Emerging Players in Christchurch, and it was Plunkett that led the line with 4-76 from his 17 overs.

The 23-year-old quick was a peripheral figure in Durham’s first LV County Championship title, as a side strain limited him to just 129.1 overs in seven games.

“Runs and wickets are always a good feeling,” Plunkett told ECBtv. “I’ve not really bowled that much in the last year, so it was nice to get some overs under my belt.

“It was important I get used to my game again and work the batters out. It’s nice to pick wickets up and have consistency.”

Plunkett picked up the wickets of Josh Brodie, Brad Patton, Scott Styris and Brad Wilson, and he believes the Lions are prepared for their opening four-day ‘Test’ match against New Zealand A, which begins in Queenstown on March 1.

“They’re a good team and have some big names out, but so do we. I’m looking forward to a good battle.

“We’ve had a fierce few training days. When the games come thick and fast, that’s when you get the tired legs and the weary bodies.

“We’ll fly down to Queenstown and get some light practice. I’m pretty sure the lads are psyched up for the Test."

Stephen Moore, the Worcestershire opening batsman, was again prominent in the Lions’ first batting effort, making a steady 59.

Plunkett confirms that this is no fluke. Moore, the leading run-scorer in English first-class cricket last summer, with 1,451, is a diligent type.

Plunkett said: “He had a great year last year, and works really hard, day-in day-out, in the nets.

“He trains really hard and looks comfortable out there. I hope his success continues.”

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