England captain Eoin Morgan talked about his team on the eve of the first T20I match of the five-match series against India, to be played at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. The five T20Is will be played on March 12, 14, 16, 18, and 20.
Morgan called this England squad the strongest one he has seen in a long time. He also mentioned that ECB’s player rotation policy in Tests is “a very small sacrifice” that enables him to lead his strongest T20 squad against India in a World Cup year.
England lost the four-Test series 1-3 to India and the said player rotation policy was blamed for the Test series loss. During the Test series, England slumped to a defeat while Jos Buttler, Jonny Bairstow, and Moeen Ali all spent time at home for planned rests due to the jammed nature of this year’s international fixture schedule.
Definitely Is Our Strongest Squad Available, Says Eoin Morgan
All three Jos Buttler, Jonny Bairstow, and Moeen Ali return for the T20I series which Morgan termed as crucial for England’s development and preparations ahead of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in India in October and November.
“Yes, it definitely is our strongest squad available and it’s great to have everybody here. It’s very rare that we get to do it. Our last tour to South Africa was a little bit of a fluke in the way that the schedule worked – there was a break both before and after for guys who play all formats of the games,” Morgan said in an interview with Sky Sports Cricket’s Michael Atherton.
“After this tour, I don’t see another opportunity given the schedule to get our strongest squad available together. So preparation and clarity of roles – gelling as a side and being comfortable with the game-plan that we are going into the World Cup with – is going to be extremely important,” he added.
Morgan further said that England not having its best squad for one Test series is just part of a grander scheme of things.
For Joe Root Not To Have His Strongest Squad For One Test Series Is A Very Small Sacrifice In The Grand Scheme Of Things: Eoin Morgan
Many former England captains felt that Joe Root was handicapped with many of his first-choice players being rested due to the national team’s focus on white-ball cricket with the T20 World Cup in India. Eoin Morgan called it a small sacrifice in a grand scheme of things.
“To be honest, from a captain’s point of view I very rarely get our strongest squad together so for him [Root] not to have his strongest squad for one series is a very small sacrifice in the grand scheme of things given bio-secure bubbles, the schedule and the pinnacle of winning an Ashes series away from home,” Morgan said.
ECB stressed the need to rotate multi-format players in a jammed-packed schedule and life in COVID-19 bio-bubbles.