T20 World Cup 2021: Eoin Morgan keeps suspense on who’ll open the innings against New Zealand

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England skipper Eoin Morgan refused to divulge who’ll open alongside Jos Buttler in the semi-final 1 of the ICC T20 World Cup 2021 against New Zealand at Abu Dhabi on November 10.

England suffered a major blow ahead of the semi-final as opener Jason Roy was ruled out of the tournament after he suffered a calf injury in their last group match against South Africa at Sharjah.

With Roy being not available for the rest of the tournament, there are a lot of speculations about who will partner Jos Buttler at the top of the order against New Zealand in the important clash.

While Jonny Bairstow is expected to open the innings, England can also be tempted to bring hard hitter Liam Livingstone as an opener for the semi-final.

Skipper Eoin Morgan, however, refused to share any information about who’ll open alongside Jos Buttler but said that they’ve made the decision within the group and they are blessed to have the number of batters in the side who want to open the innings.

“Within the group, we’ve made a decision. Not willing to share that, unfortunately. We are blessed with guys who can bat at the top of the order and actually who want to bat at the top of the order. So I think we’re in a very good position that we have a number of guys to choose from,” Eoin Morgan said. 

When asked about the inclusion of David Wiley in the side, Morgan said that they’ll make the decision after assessing the pitch and if it’s batting friendly, they might need extra bowling and if it’s not they might be tempted to bring in the extra batter.

“When we turn up and look at the wicket, depending on if it’s a really good batting … we might need the extra bit of bowling. If it’s not, you might need the extra bit of batting,” he said.

Morgan said that with the number of injuries in the side and New Zealand being full-strength they are not the strong favorites. He admitted that they need to play good cricket to beat the Black Caps.

“I wouldn’t say strong favourites. New Zealand have a full-strength squad. We’ve obviously been hampered with a lot of injuries throughout this tournament. We’re playing really good cricket … But we need to play really good cricket in order to beat them,” he said.

Eoin Morgan said New Zealand’s ability to fight back as a team is one of their strongest points.

“It’s probably one of their strongest points. They work well together. They never rely solely on one or two players. It’s always a very collective effort,” he said.

England added James Vince to the squad in place of injured Jason Roy, who joined Tymal Mills, Sam Curran and Jofra Archer in the list of injured players.