Eoin Morgan leads from the front as England hope for T20 repeat


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The Independent Online

To lead a team to two defeats in the same day would be enough to dampen the enthusiasm of many captains, but Eoin Morgan enjoys the job so much he would like to do considerably more of it.

A knee injury to Stuart Broad means Morgan will be in charge again when England begin their home international summer with Tuesday night’s Twenty20 fixture against Sri Lanka at The Oval. It should be a slightly more sedate occasion for Morgan than Saturday, when Middlesex were beaten by Essex and Sussex in the double-header at Lord’s – two matches staged on the same day.

Broad’s frequent injury problems have lent weight to the idea he could surrender the T20 captaincy and vice-captain Morgan is ideally placed to step forward.

“Certainly a leadership role is something I would be inclined to take on,” he said. “I quite enjoy leading. I have taken on the captaincy at Middlesex in T20 and one-dayers and that has been brilliant – a bit of a challenge but really exciting.

“Then, when I have done it at international level, I have really enjoyed it. I think my strengths would be to be calm in high-pressure situations and to make good decisions. I think I have a reasonably good cricket brain as well.”

One of the few highlights of the winter for England was their victory over Sri Lanka during the World Twenty20 tournament in Bangladesh. Their chances of a repeat should be improved because the man who led Sri Lanka to that World T20 title has since defected to England. Paul Farbrace quit that post to become Peter Moores’ assistant and Morgan said Farbrace is already exerting an influence. “He has been key to our preparation,” said the 27-year-old. “His knowledge of how to counter things they can do has been really good.

“He has probably given us a bit more background than we would normally be able to access, which is brilliant.”

Cricket enthusiasts will be relieved to have international action to look forward to after more worrying days for the sport. Lou Vincent, the former New Zealand batsman, is reported to have given information to the International Cricket Council that alleges widespread corrupt practice across the cricket world.

Morgan said: “If it still doesn’t hit home when guys go to jail [as Pakistan players Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir did in 2011] then you have a problem.”