England have been dealt a massive injury scare as leader of the pack Eoin Morgan injured his left index finger during a fielding drill on Friday. Morgan took a blow on his left index finger while practising slip catching from a bowling machine at the Ageas Bowl ahead of Saturday’s World Cup warm up game against Australia. Morgan was taken to a nearby hospital for a precautionary X-Ray and as per the reports, the blow is likely to be nothing but a minor knock.
ECB released a short statement soon after the skipper was rushed to the hospital. “England captain Eoin Morgan has sustained a small flake fracture to his left index finger. He will not take part in the match [against Australia], but is expected to make a full recovery and be available for England’s opening ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup match against South Africa at The Oval on Thursday 30 May,” the statement read.
Meanwhile, England have confirmed Adil Rashid will miss Saturday’s match against Australia to rest the right shoulder injury that flared up during the recent ODI series against Pakistan. It gives the left-arm spinner Liam Dawson, a surprise call-up for the World Cup, the chance to play for England for the first time since the tour of Sri Lanka last October. Joe Root will be part of it despite missing training on Friday to return home, with the Test captain scheduled to rejoin his teammates in Southampton on Friday evening.
The match against Australia will not have ODI status but England supporters will be sweating over the fact that their one of the most inform batters has suffered a blow just days ahead of the opening match of the quadrennial event. The extent of the knock will be known after the X-Ray report is out. But the 32-year-old looked in pain as he walked out of the ground after suffering the blow to his left index finger.
In last 10 ODI matches in which Morgan has batted, the English skipper has 5 half-centuries and a ton to his name as he continues to lead England from all fronts. Recently, Morgan was lauded for dealing with the Alex Hales situation with no fuss. Hales was kicked out from the 2019 World Cup squad after the dynamic batsman failed a recreational drug test ahead of the cricket extravaganza.
Morgan has been a stupendous leader for England following the dismal performances in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015. In the previous edition of the showpiece event, Morgan-led England won just 2 of their six Pool-A matches and faced a humiliating exit from the group stage itself. Since then England have lost just three bilateral ODI series – against Australia in 2015 (home), South Africa in 2015/16 (away) and India in 2016/17 (away).