England v Sri Lanka, 2nd ODI, Chester-le-Street May 25, 2014

Morgan condemns 'worst' England display


Eoin Morgan was at a loss to explain England's humbling defeat at Chester-le-Street, terming it "one of the worst performances I've been a part of in an England shirt".

Morgan was leading the side in the absence of Alastair Cook, who was ruled out on the morning of the game with a groin strain, and presided over England's heaviest ODI defeat on home soil and their sixth-lowest all-out total anywhere.

England had won four ODIs on the bounce before this match but now they go to Old Trafford with their tail between their legs.

"It's as badly as we can bat," Morgan said. "It was one of the worst performances I've been a part of, in an England shirt. I can't explain why we played that badly.

"It was a little bit tacky, and nipped around a small bit - but we're good enough to negotiate that. It's a pitch we would have turned up at and said 'Yes, perfect, we'd love to play', especially against a side like Sri Lanka. But we've been outplayed."

Morgan then tried to spin the margin of defeat as meaning England will be able to move on more quickly from the result than had it been a narrow loss.

"I don't think it's going to be a huge setback," he said. "I think it'd be a bigger one if we fell 40 runs short, had substance throughout the whole innings, looked like we were going to win.

"This is a performance I think we've got to draw a line under, and look forward to Manchester. You can't look into it too deeply - you'd be here for weeks. But today, throughout our batting display, it was just terrible.

"If you look at the quality or skill of the players, in the last game, you'd be really happy with it. Today, it was the whole game ... so it's easier to wipe to one side. I don't think there's a huge amount of change that needs to be made."

It remains unclear whether Cook will be fit for Old Trafford on Wednesday to try and pick up the pieces from this defeat and ensure another damaging run of results does not emerge.

"I'm not going to dwell on it a hell of a lot," Morgan said, "but certainly as a batting unit, there are a few guys who need to up their game a little bit. With the series in the balance, we've got to do that for Manchester."

Angelo Mathews, meanwhile, will be a far happier captain travelling south west on Monday. The team were forced to train indoors on Saturday and plenty were still sporting multiple layers against the spring chill.

"It always feels better to beat England at home because they have a very strong side when playing at home," he said. "We had to dig deep after the loss in the first one-dayer. Yesterday was a great example, we trained really hard and conditions weren't good, we had to train indoors, but the focus was there and it paid off."

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dean on May 27, 2014, 11:40 GMT

    @Village Blacksmith, Even though I did not agree with Moores reappointment, for some strange reason I find myself half defeneding him. Re my other post I think it would have been difficult for him to introduce more younger players as he would have had to pick them on their c'ship form & not on their ltd overs form. He generally went with players who have been in & around the set up over the past year or so, with the exception of Gurney, which has come off, (although I am not sure how effective he will be overseas). Although Finn has started the summer well I think they are right to leave him be at Middlesex until they are sure he has turned a corner leave him there for the whole summer if need be.

  • Prem on May 27, 2014, 9:43 GMT

    Morgan, Bopara etc have been given many chances over many many years and they are still not automatic choices. England needs better talent starting with some new selectors.

  • R on May 26, 2014, 17:20 GMT

    @sirViv… its the emperor's new clothes XI… this is not eng's best side!! and including carberry shows the new coach has no idea what the best side is… u have highlighted other players who shd be involved & selecting carberry over hales or lumb for this/any match is truly baffling… and perhaps giles/moores did not see bairstow's great finishing vs india a while back, no idea why he hasnt been involved since, plus i understand middx will only release their excellent bowler finn when finn's ruiner saker is no longer in the eng setup, which shd be soon.. just because the WC is ''only'' 9 months away is no reason to continue picking the wrong players who have never won anything like the serial (100+ odis) underachiever ''bits & pieces bopara''… plus morgan (116 odis) himself is starting to look like a showpony never delivering anything of substance while pointing the finger at the bowlers.. Gurney (and Jordan) have done well so its never too late to introduce new talent..

  • Dummy4 on May 26, 2014, 16:42 GMT

    i think chandimal should play no no4 in this kind of pitches.mahela and dilshan open the innings and thirimanna bat after mathiws at no 6 .

  • Janaka on May 26, 2014, 16:28 GMT

    As a captain, you should take the responsibility of your team. You are the one to motivate. Being a manly man is very important. I would say you lack that. If you are not confident, if your personalty is not enough even to play as a player, I think you are useless. Think about that. You need to be a confident captain. Leading is an art. Like in Godfather, even the most innocent looking man can become the leader of the pack. Think about that. Be tough. Don't say "this happened, that happened". What's the use? I'm saying this, because it's a pity to see English performing really badly. What's wrong with you?

  • Buddhika on May 26, 2014, 16:26 GMT

    Congrats Sri Lanka. It's superb display of Bowling.Specially Sachie and Kula. Sachie's variations r awesome Well Supported by Mali and Angi. And how could we forgot Dili Positive,Aggressive 80+ almost after one year and timely blasting knock from Ashan. But still some issues to existing in Our Team. 1/3 Senior Batmen got out less than 10. 1/3 Senior Batmen played with lower SR. Probably one go to big score. more than 2 youngsters out playing XI(kusal,thisara,chathuranga) at least one youngster playing in a in-proper position(Chandi-7) And What's Role of 31 year old Dhammika Prasad(6 -36-1) Normally past bowlers played 33,34. After 30 they become injury prone. Then what's d point of Prasad selecting ahead of young fast bowler like Jayampathy.

  • Dean on May 26, 2014, 15:49 GMT

    I don't want to use this as an excuse but I have to question the wisdom of playing a 50 over series before the domestic 50 over competition has begun. The only real benefit of bringing back 50 over domestic cricket was to help the national team as it would have been better financially for counties to stick with 40 over games which can be started later & are more likely to put bums on seats. Wouldn't it have been better to have had maybe a 2 -3 week period during early May when the first half of the 50 over competition was played? This would seem like better preparation for this series than 4 day championship games & the odd T20. It would have also given the chance for players at county level to push their claims as it's difficult to pick uncapped players on their c'ship form for 50 over ODI's.

  • Peter on May 26, 2014, 15:42 GMT

    Well that has to be the shortest "resurgence" of all time. Normal conditions have resumed it would seem

  • Dean on May 26, 2014, 15:30 GMT

    @Village Blacksmith, Do the likes of Ballance, Root & Buttler not count as young batsman? I'm certainly not sticking up for Moores or the rest of current Eng hire achy but It's not necessarily the right time to blood a team of young inexperienced players. The WC is only 9 months away & you can't blame Moores or anyone else for wanting to have the best side available to him irrespective of age, Surley the time to start blooding that young talent you talk of will be after the WC? Having said that, I think that Carberry was a strange selection. Lumb scored a 100 in WI a few months ago & with the WC in mind surely he would have been worth looking at again, personally I would also have liked to have seen Hales involved as if he comes off he could offer another dimension to the batting & has experience, all be it in T20 of Aus conditions. Also re Bopara, he's not just selected for his batting with the current lack of bowling options in the top 7 he is very much needed as the 5th bowler.

  • Dean on May 26, 2014, 15:12 GMT

    @ Dushan Senarathne, What ever way you look at things SRL will miss their legendary players when they hang up their boots, any team with players of that quality would. From what I have seen of the new crop of SRL batsman they look fairly well stocked in the shorter formats. However I think it is at test level where the likes of MJ & KS will be missed most. None of the young SRL batsman who have been given a chance in the past 3 or 4 yrs have been able to score consistent runs and build a test career. Although I don't know too much about domestic cricket in SRL it doesn't seem as if the FC system is really producing batsman of test caliber. Perhaps this is due to the rise of T20 & having the riches of the IPL on their doorstep.

  • No featured comments at the moment.