England v West Indies, World T20 2016 final April 3, 2016

Team will share Stokes' pain - Morgan


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'Tonight we will share the pain' - Morgan

Eoin Morgan, the England captain, says his team will share the pain of their agonising final-over defeat in the World T20 final against West Indies in Kolkata, just as he hopes they will share the triumphs he believes they will produce in the future.

It was England's batting, Morgan added, that had let them down today, after an erratic performance had left them defending a total of 155. However, he was also aware that no amount of team unity would be enough to console the fall-guy of the final, Ben Stokes, after his final over was struck for four sixes in a row in a stunning match-seizing onslaught from Carlos Braithwaite.

"It's quite simple from my point of view," said Morgan. "[Stokes] is going to be devastated, and it'll take its toll over the next couple of days, but we share everything that we do, we stick together as a side, we share the pain, we share the success, now and in the future.

"I can't fault anything we did with the ball today, we were exceptional, there was a tremendous amount of belief at the halfway stage that we'd put a score on the board and we were right in the game. But we let ourselves down tremendously with the bat. I thought we were terrible, probably 40 short on a 180-190 wicket.

"But you can say what you like to [Stokes] at the moment, but he's probably not hearing it."

That was a sentiment Marlon Samuels, West Indies' Player of the Match and long-term adversary of Stokes, also expressed at the conclusion of the game, although he did so with no intention to soothe any hurt pride.

Speaking to the media with his feet on the desk in the press conference room and with his winners' gold medal dangling from his neck, Samuels dismissed Stokes as "nervous" and said that he "doesn't learn" after coming off second-best on numerous previous occasions in his jousts with Samuels.

In the Caribbean in 2014, Stokes famously broke his hand punching a locker in the dressing room after being dismissed for a duck in Bridgetown, and on England's subsequent Test tour in the spring of 2015, Samuels stood to attention and saluted Stokes from the crease after his dismissal for 8 in Grenada.

Today, the two were involved in a brief altercation at the start of Samuels' innings, when he came to the crease with West Indies in some trouble at 1 for 1 in the second over, which soon became 5 for 2 with the dismissal of Chris Gayle.

Samuels duly shored up West Indies' run-chase with a brilliantly paced 85 not out from 66 balls but he was stranded at the non-striker's end when the match entered its decisive moment. Asked what advice he had given his batting partner, Braithwaite, when 19 needed for West Indies to win the match and their second World T20 title, Samuels said:

"Stokes is a nervous laddie, so what I tell Braithwaite is to just hold his pose, and he's going to bowl a couple of full tosses, as always, and it will work in our favour. And he played a brilliant knock at the end there to give me a little break down at the other end."

Channelling the anger that Darren Sammy, West Indies' captain, had expressed rather more eloquently during the post-match presentations, Samuels elaborated on his off-kilter decision to dedicate his match award to Shane Warne by saying: "I don't appreciate the way that he continues to talk about me, maybe it is because my face is real and his face is not."

Morgan, for his part, claimed not to have noticed any of West Indies' more provocative celebrations at the end of the contest, but reiterated his pride in his players and his belief that they would come back stronger after reaching a global final so early in their development as a team.

"Regardless of what happened today, today was about letting ourselves go out and play with the freedom that we have trusted ourselves with all tour," he said. "This is the beginning of something I am hoping will be special, we have a great amount of talent to work with and I hope we can keep this group of players together as long as we can and look to the future.

"It takes some beating, definitely," he added. "But I personally think we will [come back]. This side is at the very beginning of its progression, it's actually frightening to think what we can do if we achieve our potential, but certainly tonight we share the pain."

Andrew Miller is UK editor of ESPNcricinfo. He tweets @miller_cricket

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Rakesh on April 5, 2016, 6:40 GMT

    It was pressure which got into stokes. The line and length he bowled was just there to be hit. The team should have helped him during that last over and the result would have been different. May Stokes find some peace and return as a much better bowler. It is hard to come out of such mess but he will. He is a good player and we need his services.

  • Jahanzeb on April 4, 2016, 14:49 GMT

    Morgan's leadership has had a positive effect on England, but i don't feel bad for Stokes ran his mouth and couldn't back it up. He is weak loud mouth who got what he deserved.

  • Edwin on April 4, 2016, 13:36 GMT

    Morgan had a terrible tournament with the bat - the question has to be asked - how would England have fared with Pietersen as his replacement, as both batsman, and captain......

  • BasinBardo on April 4, 2016, 13:34 GMT

    samuels has every right to bash on whoever bashed him.... people here being pity for stokes and bashing samuels ...but one must know ...stokes did sledge samuels unnecessarily and got paid for it ...coming to the warne saying samuels is poor is so stupid ..he is not a batsmen to comment rudely on others batting.its better bowlers do comment on bowling and batsmen do comment on batsmen but not bowler commenting on batsmen ...its nothing but warne showing anger on samuels even a child can understand

  • Nicholas on April 4, 2016, 11:58 GMT

    Despite being a big critic of Stokes on these forums, I'm pleased that Morgan/England have issued this strong support of Stokes as you can never place all the blame of a team failure on one single player. I've never really rated Stokes' bowling in short formats, and unless he continues to work extremely hard on improving this, Morgan and the England management should simply stop trying to hammer square pegs into round holes and then wonder why/moan when things break down at times. As others have rightly pointed out, there is such a small margin for error bowling and it's a batman's game. Can Morgan and the brains behind the scenes really convince us fans that the best English bowlers were utilised at the right moments of the game? Of course not and nobody ever really can. They say what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, so maybe Stokes will train hard and come back stronger and silence doubters like me. If ever there was a format for a 'hero-to-zero' pattern, it's got to be T20!

  • Prem on April 4, 2016, 11:21 GMT

    Morgan was equally to blame as Stokes. He did not talk to his bowler much more than he could have. Warne was a brilliant legspinner, the second best Australian leg-spinner of his generation after Stuart McGill but outside the field, he is over-rated. Warne makes many wrong calls but strangely many call him brilliant. Good on Samuels for dishing it back to Warne but Samuels would have done himself a world of good if he had done so in a dignified manner.

  • Jeremy on April 4, 2016, 10:48 GMT

    I trust they are also sharing the pain of a captain who has contributed virtually nothing with the bat throughout the competition.

  • Shafin on April 4, 2016, 10:41 GMT

    Feel really sorry for Stokes.

  • khushal on April 4, 2016, 10:37 GMT

    I don't remember some greatness by ben stokes. He has always been given a preference over moeen ali who is far better than him. Moeen ali has not bowled. I think England's reason of losing was underutilized moeen ali and over utilized stokes.

  • Jon on April 4, 2016, 9:38 GMT

    Stokes and others were openly mocking the West Indians throughout the innings - I take no pleasure in seeing a grown man cry but in Stoke's case I thought it was poetic that his bowling cost his side the match.