Jos Buttler and Babar Azam named their Player of the Tournament.

A shock loss to Ireland in a rain-affected match at the MCG placed England, which thrashed India in a semifinal in Adelaide on Thursday, under pressure to qualify for the semis.

A washout against Australia in Melbourne added to the uncertainty and England only qualified for the semifinals when it beat Sri Lanka last Saturday with just two balls to spare.

Few players in this event exemplify the importance of resilience more than Alex Hales, who partnered Buttler in an unbeaten opening partnership of 170 to reel in India’s tally of 168 for six with ease at Adelaide Oval.

An usher for the England captain in his wedding in 2017, Hales was banished from national duties and missed the 2019 World Cup triumph after testing positive to illicit drugs.

He only earned a recall for this tournament as a late replacement for Jonny Bairstow but has vindicated the decision by making 211 runs at an average of 52.75.

England’s path to the final was serene compared to the stress faced by Pakistan after excruciating losses to India at the MCG and Zimbabwe in Perth to start the tournament.

From an improbable position, Azam’s team has since shown the stirring spirit from 1992 with consecutive victories over the Netherlands, South Africa, Bangladesh and New Zealand to reach the final.

“We had our first two matches as losses, which cost us, but I am proud of the way the team came back in the last four matches,” Azam said.

The La Nina weather pattern prevalent on the eastern seaboard of Australia throughout the Southern Hemisphere spring has proven problematic in the World Cup and poses a significant threat on Sunday.

Between eight and 20 millimeters (nearly three-quarters of an inch) are predicted on Sunday and heavy rain is also predicted for the reserve day on Monday. World Cup honors will be shared if the necessary amount of overs needed to decide a result cannot be played.

Having fallen short against Ireland in a rain-shortened match in the group stages, Buttler said England received a timely reminder about how to prepare for possible interruptions.

“I think any experiences that you can draw on good or bad, you will have learned from those and reflect on those … situations of adversity or a bit of chaos,” he said. “The more experience you’ve got of being able to understand those feelings and how to react to them, I definitely see that as a benefit.”

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