India vs England: All our batsmen got out playing aggressively, says Eoin Morgan
After suffering a 66-run loss in the first ODI of the three-match series against India here at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune, England skipper Eoin Morgan on Tuesday (March 23) defended his batsmen saying that he would have had a problem if the batsmen got out while playing defensive shots. Jonny Bairstow might have played a 94-run knock, but Indian bowlers came back strongly to hand hosts a 66-run victory in the first ODI.
With this win, India went 1-0 up in the three-match series. Both teams will now lock horns in the second ODI on Friday (March 26). For the hosts, Prasidh Krishna returned with four wickets. England were 135/0 at one stage, but Indian bowlers made a stunning comeback to bundle out England for 251 inside 43 overs.
“We made mistakes, India bowled well. For the majority of the game, we played really well. It is a shame we could not build on the bowling unit’s effort to restrict India to just 317 and our two fantastic openers, how they performed at the front, that is what happened,” England skipper Eoin Morgan said at the post-match press conference.
“The wicket was outstanding, so when obviously Jonny and Jason established a partnership in the way they did when other players tried to play the same way, India bowled well and held their length. I think that’s evident in how the guys got out, all our guys were playing attacking shots. I think if we are all getting out playing defensive shots then it would be the issue,” said Morgan during a virtual press conference.
Asked whether his side missed someone like Joe Root in the batting lineup, Morgan said: “Joe is world-class, particularly at number three spot for us. His role is such an important one for us. Him missing out leaves a massive hole, but he needs rest and he needs to spend time with his family.”
During the match, Sam Billings sprained his collar bone joint while fielding and skipper Morgan split the webbing between his right thumb and index finger while fielding.
“We are going to wait 48 hours and see how my injury is. I split my webbing. Obviously, Sam Billings had a hit on his collar bone, we will see and we will give as much time it is needed to hopefully be available for Friday. I think there are two different instances. When you have a split webbing, fielding is a concern.
“We are going to give a majority of our players a chance to play this format. It has been a vehicle to grow our squad, so there will be opportunities for guys coming in. I haven’t spoken with Sam regarding injury hampering his batting. In my case, it is never going to be 100 per cent. It is not like that I cannot hold the bat,” he added.
Asked about cementing England’s No. 1 ranking in ODI format, Morgan said: “It is not about cementing the No. 1 spot. It is about building a group of players that will hopefully bring something of quality in a World Cup. If you talk about motivation and determination, it goes hand in hand. Sometimes people learn how much quality you have to produce in an international match to win.”
Earlier, Shikhar Dhawan (98) and Virat Kohli (56) might have set the platform at the top, but it was KL Rahul (62 not out) and Krunal Pandya’s (58 not out) blitz in the end that propelled India’s score to 317/5. The duo added 111 of their 112 runs in the last nine overs as they sent the English bowlers on a leather hunt.