Morgan steps in for T20 series as Broad is forced home

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The Independent Online

What the selectors taketh away they also giveth. Eoin Morgan had no sooner been overlooked for a place in the fourth Test today than he was named as the Twenty20 captain for the two matches against India next week.

Morgan will replace Stuart Broad, who is leaving the tour after a recurrence of a bruised heel which has dogged him throughout his time in India. Broad will be accompanied to the airport by Steve Finn, whose lower back strain not only cost him a place in the Test but in the T20 matches as well. James Harris, the uncapped former Glamorgan seam bowler who has moved to Middlesex, has been called up.

While Finn is expected to return immediately for the one-day internationals next month, Broad is to "begin a period of rest and rehabilitation" according to England. He should be available for the latter part of the ODI series as originally planned.

Morgan may not have been wholly compensated by being overlooked for the Test team, with Joe Root being given an unexpected debut, but his perceived leadership skills still make him an important part of England's future. His elevation does nothing to conceal the mess of the brief T20 series.

With Kevin Pietersen and Graeme Swann being rested and two others injured, it takes on the hue of a second team. That view is only enhanced by the fact that the squad will be in the charge of assistant coach, Richard Halsall.

Andy Flower is leaving for home at the end of the Test series, Ashley Giles who is taking over as limited-overs coach does not start until January. Nobody would disagree that Flower deserves an early cut, equally Giles has to wind up properly his job as director of cricket at Warwickshire. Halsall is definitely up to the task he has been given.

But it still conveys the impression that England are treating a T20 mini-series at the end of a gruelling Test series as a low-grade affair.