Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
England batsman Eoin Morgan has replaced Alastair Cook as ODI captain after the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) made it official today.
The decision comes after the national selectors held a meeting at Trent Bridge in Nottingham on Friday to discuss Cook’s fate as ODI captain.
To make matters worse, Cook, who has only managed to score one half-century in his last 22 innings, has also been left out of England’s 15-man World Cup squad.
“I am gutted to be left out of the World Cup squad and it is likely to take me a while to get over the disappointment,” Cook said. “That said, I wish Peter, Eoin and the lads all the best for the World Cup. I would also like to thank all the players and fans who have supported me during my time as one-day captain.”
When asked how it felt to be appointed as England’s new full-time ODI captain, Morgan said: “I firmly believe that with the players currently involved in the one-day set up, we have the makings of a very good one-day side, a young side that can surprise people at the World Cup. We all recognise we still have a lot of work to do on our one-day game but the potential of this group of players is huge and it is now up to us as players to turn that potential into consistent performances.”
National selector James Whitaker stated that there was a lot of deliberation about whether Cook should be included in the World Cup squad. However, based on his recent form, there was simply no way he was going to be included in the 15-man squad.
“We spent a considerable time yesterday discussing the make up of a squad that gives England the best possible chance of success at the World Cup which begins in less than two months,” Whitaker said. “Having reviewed the recent series against Sri Lanka we came to the conclusion that there was no place for Alastair Cook amongst our strongest 15 one-day players and therefore recommended Eoin Morgan be appointed one-day captain.”
ECB managing director Paul Downton was one of the few people who believed that Cook should have carried on as ODI captain. But, he stated that he endorsed the national selectors’ decision to hand the reins over to Morgan.
While Cook may have lost the ODI captaincy, Downton made it clear that he will still be in charge of the country’s Test team.
“I have complete confidence in the decision made by the selectors and having spent time with Alastair yesterday he accepts that it has been made in the best interests of the one-day side,” Downton said. “Eoin has held a senior role in our limited overs teams for some time and has impressed on the occasions he has led the side. I would like to congratulate him on the appointment and wish him, Peter Moores and the rest of the squad all the very best over the next three months.
“Alastair remains an integral part of England cricket and continues to have a vital role in developing our emerging Test side. I would like to thank him for his leadership of the one-day side since 2011, a period which saw the team reach No. 1 in the world, Alastair lead the team to more wins than any previous England captain and also make the final of the ICC Champions Trophy.
“Alastair will now focus on an exciting and challenging year of Test cricket beginning with a series against West Indies followed by an Ashes summer culminating in a series against South Africa next winter.”