MORGAN: I LOVE A FAST ENGLAND START
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