Sunday Mirror - - PUZZLES - From DEAN WIL­SON in Dam­bulla

EOIN MOR­GAN won’t have to worry about drop­ping him­self any­time soon af­ter he got Eng­land off to an­other fast ODI start in Sri Lanka.

Mor­gan pro­duced a qual­ity cap­tain’s in­nings of 92 to help beat both the Sri Lankans and the rain.

And with War­wick­shire pace star Olly Stone, dubbed ‘Enzo’ by team­mates af­ter be­ing likened to a Fer­rari, start­ing his jet-fu­elled ca­reer by top­ping 90 miles per hour and tak­ing his first wicket in in­ter­na­tional cricket, this was a good day for Eng­land.

When the mon­soon rain ar­rived mid­way through the Sri Lankan in­nings they could not re­cover from los­ing five wick­ets to get up to par­ity on their Duck­worth-Lewis tar­get re­sult­ing in a 31-run de­feat.

“Pro­fes­sional sport is not safe,” said Mor­gan at the sug­ges­tion he was now un­drop­pable. “Don’t be a pro if you want to play it safe.

“I felt ter­ri­ble to start, I had a re­ally bad 20 mins, and nearly ran Joe out, but I got past that and felt more com­fort­able.”

Mor­gan has devel­oped a habit of turn­ing up at the start of a se­ries with three of his last five ODI hun­dreds com­ing in the first match. And he was only eight runs short be­fore La­sith Malinga took cen­tre stage with 5-44 thanks to a col­lec­tion of slower balls.

“It is a good thing to be able to per­form at the start of a se­ries,” he added.

“But it is not by chance, I am work­ing hard to get runs ev­ery game.

“But at the start of the se­ries it’s about try­ing to wres­tle mo­men­tum be­cause if you can do that it goes a long way par­tic­u­larly in a five-match se­ries.”

For the most part it was the se­nior play­ers who stepped up to the mark with Joe Root and Jos But­tler mak­ing con­tri­bu­tions with the bat and Chris Woakes do­ing the same with the ball.

But as good as Woakes’ 3-26 from his five overs were, it was the sight of his county team-mate Stone send­ing down high-ve­loc­ity rock­ets that will have got Eng­land play­ers and sup­port­ers ex­cited.

A re­place­ment for Liam Plun­kett, Stone showed that not only can he be a wicket taker at this level – he had Niroshan Dick­wella caught be­hind to claim his maiden scalp – but he can do so bowl­ing fast and with hos­til­ity.

Mor­gan added: “Olly bowled ex­actly like he has in the nets and that’s a re­ally good sign: with pace. He got the ball mov­ing, and it was all done with a very calm head.”

TAKE THAT: Eoin Mor­gan en route to 92 yes­ter­day

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