Cricket World Cup: Eoin Morgan warns Steve Smith and David Warner they need time to be accepted by cricket

The England captain refused to urge the England supporters to turn on the Australian duo

Jack Watson
Monday 24 June 2019 13:26
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Cricket World Cup: Jonny Bairstow says last three games will be huge for England

England captain Eoin Morgan has warned Australia duo Steve Smith and David Warner that it will not be “accepted back into the cricket community straightaway with open arms”.

Smith and Warner will play against England for the first time since their ban for the 2018 ball-tampering scandal when Australia face the hosts at Lord’s on Tuesday in the World Cup.

Jonny Bairstow admitted it was “a bit strange” to see Australia coach Justin Langer ask fans not to boo the duo despite him once telling supporters to jeer Stuart Broad and Bairstow during the recent Ashes series Down Under.

Morgan, however, initially steered clear of the debate, “don’t have a view on it,” he said, before drawing on the 12-month international ban handed to Warner and Smith by Cricket Australia.

“You don't know how sports fans are going to react. I think they are entitled to have their own view,” he said.

“Just because punishment was handed out and the two guys served their punishment, doesn't mean they are going to be accepted back into the cricket community straightaway with open arms. It will take time.”

England are desperate for a win after their campaign suffered its second hitch as they lost to Sri Lanka on Friday, but Morgan will be not tempted to ask the crowd to become the 12th man for his side.

“I'm not expecting anything,” he said. “I think fans and supporters up and down the country will have different reactions, as they will around the world. So yeah, let's just see.

“Sport is beautiful in many ways because it attracts people from far and wide. I think people can get carried away with sort of home support and away support. I think throughout the tournament, everybody has had support at the ground, if not more so than the home team.”

Steve Smith and David Warner will play against England for the first time since their ban for the ball-tampering scandal

England have not lost consecutive ODIs in the four years since the 2015 World Cup and defeat would not only mark the end of that record, but it would also make things much tighter for qualification than they may have anticipated.

The hosts sit on eight points from a possible 12 with nine or 10 thought to be enough to secure qualification to the semi-final and face Australia, India and New Zealand in their final three group matches.

“No, it's not must-win yet," said Morgan. "We don't need to win every game to get to the semi-final. It's another game where we try and produce a performance that's worthy of inning at Lord's against Australia.

“Honestly, we're in control of our performances from here on in, so yeah, we don't need to look elsewhere yet. Every game's a one-off game. It's a chance to prove ourselves. It's a chance to play the way we've been playing, if allowed to.”

Eoin Morgan says England will not panic following their second defeat of the tournament 

Jason Roy, who suffered a hamstring injury during the win against the West Indies and was ruled out for the games against Aghanistan and Sri Lanka, will not be fit in time to play Australia.

The opening batsman took part in a nets session at Lord’s, but the result of a scan on Monday morning confirmed he was not fully fit and that Sunday’s game against India is the new target.

England have missed Roy during his spell on the sidelines, with James Vince only picking up 26 and 14 runs against Afghanistan and Sri Lanka respectively.

“He's Jason Roy. Of course he's a big loss,” said Morgan. “He's an outstanding performer before us, the way he plays. Epitomises the way we play as a group. He's been in the team for a very long time.

“I'm confident we have the batting covered. James Vince is an extremely talented, gifted player. You can see that from just watching him.

“We have every faith in him to go on and get a score at some stage, to continue playing in his own way. It's important that he does that.”

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