Eoin Morgan is the England Twenty20 batsman you most want to watch

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We’d rate Eoin Morgan’s 85 not out off 45 balls as the best Twenty20 performance we’ve seen from an England player.

The six that he ever-so-gently placed onto the roof of a three-storey building outside the ground would ordinarily have been the most remarkable shot played in the match. We were going to devote a whole post to it until a few overs later he did something pretty much indescribable.

There were three balls of the innings remaining and Graeme Smith had set a smart field with one conspicuous gap down towards fine leg. Clearly the ball wasn’t going to be bowled where it could be hit there. The puzzle for Morgan was how he could somehow engineer a four. He went one better than that.

There are a lot of unusual shots these days. Eoin Morgan is responsible for an increasing number of them. Earlier this year, the Eoin Morgan reverse-backhand-nurdle-for-one was a staggering shot for little reward. Today’s chip shot sweep played with his back to the bowler was a staggering shot for full reward.

He didn’t even move his bloody arms. Eoin Morgan hit a six with the full face of the bat directly behind the wicketkeeper and he did it using only his wrists. Some cricket writers use the adjective ‘wristy’ when they actually mean ‘Asian’. If they want to learn what the word means, they should watch this man.

Paul Collingwood was deceptively brilliant today. Eoin Morgan was blatantly exceptional.


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  1. Couldn’t agree more, Eoin Morgan was a bloody joy to watch, absolutely made that scrappy victory.

  2. What with him and the other foreigners, the English team is looking like a properly competitive unit now.

    Full speed ahead. But get rid of Cook before it’s too late. You won’t always be lucky enough to lose him early.

  3. He is an English player, in that he plays for England. Much like Trott, Pietersen etc etc…

  4. I don’t have a problem with having those from other countries in the English team. As I said, it helps them look like a properly competitive unit in short format cricket.

    And Morgan is a real talent.

  5. Didn’t see this innings (damn), but as I said the last time there was a post about him, the guy’s timing/cleanness of ball-striking is really good. On par with Yuvraj Singh, at least. His hateability quotient is probably lower though.

  6. CM, I’ve seen England play Ireland. On that occasion Eoin was playing for Ireland – so he has been there done that and still made the decision to play for England. Joyce was also playing – he was playing for England.

    I don’t care who Morgan plays for [Middlesex even!] just as long as he plays as well as we know he can.

    So it’s been a pleasure to see that at international level, against top opposition, he seems to be able to play that well – because he is truly fantastic to watch.

  7. Six, I agree Morgan is fantastic to watch. But I think he is only playing for England now for the career boost and international exposure. Which is fine. I too don’t care which cricketer plays for which team. But If I was English, I would have a problem with relying so heavily on talents of ‘foreign’ players, so to speak. It’s not a nationalist thing. It’s just like Vim said, England is only beginning to look like a proper team with all these additions.

    But that’s just me.

  8. Morgan is going to have happen to him what happened to Greame Hick ie switch countries to play Test cricket, only to have your original country become a Test playing nation fairly early in your international career. I hope for his sake that the rest of his career doesn’t reflect what happened to Hick, but, then, it is England …

  9. Who is the twenty/20 batsmen you least want to watch?

    Or at least watch open?

    Take a choice out of the two on display today.

    Still it is worth a chortle seeing Cookie get thoroughly confused on his first outing as cap’n.

  10. England is the least parochial of all the terst playing nations in terms of opening up its (densely populated) first class game to many comers. I have always advocated that England should do this and opposed the additional restrictions being placed on overseas/kolpak players.

    The other side of that coin must surely be that England acquires more players migrating from other nations than most of the test playing nations.

    Works in its own weird way, IMHO.

    Eoin Morgan, for example, has been playing in the Middlesex system since he was a pup. Hats off to the Irish system for developing players like Joyce and Morgan, but the fine Irish propsects are being turned from potential into reality in the English system at the moment.

    The Ireland team is benefiting from this as well as the England team. Porterfield, the O’Brians, Rankin and I think some others are all at the finishing school that is English first class cricket. Flawed, but it is there and there are few alternatives.

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