Euro 2020 Special

Eoin Morgan Calls It A Day: Victorious England ODI Skipper Announces International Retirement

Eoin Morgan, the man who led England to World Cup success has announced his retirement from the age of international cricket at the age of 35. Although he would have liked to play on at least until the T20I World Cup in Australia later this year, he has been struggling with fitness in recent years, and back-to-back matches have become a physical challenge. There has also been a decline in form – he has made only one fifty in his last 26 innings. He can read the runes and knows there are younger, hungrier players eyeing his spot in the team.

But he retires having left his mark on the game.


Morgan’s not even English

Morgan was born in Dublin, Ireland, and made his ODI debut for them in 2006. He became the first cricketer to score a double century for them, and went on to represent them in 23 ODIs.

However, his mother was English, he had held a British passport since birth, and he had made no secret of his desire to play for England because of the greater opportunities it afforded him.

In 2009 he completed his switch of international allegiance when he made his ODI debut against the West Indies.


Eoin Morgan’s greatest innings

Arguably his greatest innings in an England shirt came earlier in that victorious 2019 World Cup campaign when England played Afghanistan at Old Trafford. He made 148 off just 71 balls, smashing 17 sixes, the most ever by an ODI player in a single innings. Afghan leg spinner Rashid Khan bore the full brunt, and his 9 overs cost 110 runs – the most expensive bowling spell in the history of limited overs international cricket.


The World Cup Final

However, his best moment in an England shirt came four weeks after that when England beat New Zealand at Lord’s to win the World Cup for the first time. Morgan himself did not have a good match with the bat, making just nine. But after Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler had dragged the home side to a tie after 50 overs, he showed his captaincy skills by sending them out to face the Super Over. And he made the bold call asking the inexperienced Jofra Archer to bowl in the high pressure environment. His gamble paid off as England won it off the last ball.


Record breaker

Although Morgan has now retired he does so with a  number of individual records to his name.

They include:

• The most ODI appearances for England (225)

• The most ODI runs for his country – 6,957.

• The most ODI sixes for England, 202 (the next man on the all-time list, Jos Buttler, has got only 140 to his name)

• The most T20I appearances for England (115)

• The most T20I runs for England (2458); and

• The most T20I sixes for England (120)


Other achievements

Morgan was also part of the team that England’s first global cricket tournament, the T20I World Cup in the Caribbean in 2010, and captained the team to the final in 2016, where they lost to the West Indies.


Style of Leadership

Morgan encouraged his team-mates to be aggressive whatever the circumstances. That is reflected in the fact that with him at the helm England have broken the world record for the highest total in a  one day international on three occasions, with their recent 498/4 against the Netherlands the latest benchmark. Ironically, Morgan himself missed out that day and was out for a  first ball duck!

He also encouraged diversity and embraced the multi-cultural backgrounds from which his team has drawn.

Stokes has described him as the best captain he has ever played under, and has said that he wants to follow his example now that he is test skipper.


He is in an elite club

Only two other men apart from Morgan have lifted the World Cup as England captain – Bobby Moore in football, and Martin Johnson in rugby union.


He is not just a limited overs’ player

Morgan is far from being an ODI player. He has played domestically for Middlesex since 2005, and was good enough to be selected in 16 tests for England, his top score being the 130 he made against Pakistan at Trent Bridge in 2010. He was also part of the team that won the Ashes in 2014.


Post international retirement

Morgan will continue playing for London Spirit in the Hundred, and has already turned his hand to punditry. There are already indications that franchises in a number of countries are considering hiring him as a coach.




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