Morgan: England ‘mind-blowingly good’ in semi-final victory


Former World Cup-winning captain Eoin Morgan has heaped praise on England’s “mind-blowingly good” victory over India in the T20 World Cup semi-finals in Adelaide.

England booked a place in Sunday’s final against Pakistan, live on Sky Sports, with an incredible 10-wicket victory after chasing down their target of 169 with four overs to spare.

Alex Hales fired an unbeaten 86 and put on an unbroken 170-run stand with captain Jos Buttler (80no), with Morgan hailing England’s dominance to despatch a strong and experienced Indian team.

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Watch highlights from England’s stunning 10-wicket win over India in the T20 World Cup semi-final at Adelaide Oval

Reflecting on England’s dominant success, Morgan told Sky Sports: “Absolutely mind-blowingly good. They made a very good Indian side look ordinary and that’s very difficult to do. That involves planning well, executing, and then taking it one step further and putting them to bed.

“It’s like a big boxing bout but at two different weight divisions, that’s how it felt towards the end with Alex Hales and Jos Buttler going absolutely bananas. I’m so happy for the side, for Jos and for (coach) Matthew Mott. The opportunity now on Sunday is huge.

“Against big players like Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Suryakumar Yadav and Virat Kohli they out-thought them, out-executed them and made them look an average team.

“Jos made a good point in that some of the hardest games in World Cups and the most stressful times are just getting out of the group stages. There’s so many different variables going on, different teams to prepare for and different conditions.

“The latter stages are about untying the dogs loose and letting them run free, which is what they did.

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Jos Buttler joins Morgan and Ward to reflect on England’s sensational victory over India

“They’ve blown away a very strong Indian team on paper today and they’ll sit in that changing room tonight, hopefully with a cold drink in hand, and reflect very proudly with one eye on the final on Sunday.”

The perfect performance from England?

Buttler completed the statement win in style, blasting paceman Mohammed Shami over his head for six to see England reach their target with the final ball of the 16th over.

“The character we have shown ever since [the loss to Ireland] has been [excellent] and we put in our best performance so far, against top-quality opposition as well,” Buttler said.

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Sam Curran’s superb diving catch dismissed India skipper Rohit Sharma

“We came here very excited, there was a really good feel around the group, and I felt everyone from one to 11 stood up today.”

England’s 170-run stand was the highest opening-wicket partnership in T20 World Cup history, with Hales proud of the role he played in England’s dominant success.

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Buttler says his England’s 10-wicket victory over India is their best performance of the T20 World Cup so far

“This will be right up there for sure,” Hales said. “It’s a huge occasion playing India in the semi-final of a World Cup…really happy with the way I played. It’s a special feeling in a country that I love and I’ve spent a lot of time here, so tonight is one of the best nights of my career.”

Where did it go wrong for India?

Another former England skipper, Nasser Hussain, took aim at India for failing to keep up with England’s aggressive approach at the top of the innings. Despite a powerful batting card, they crawled to 38-1 in the powerplay, compared to 63-0 when Buttler and Hales were at the crease.

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Buttler smashed Mohammed Shami for six to seal the win

Hussain said: “When you see England in the first six overs there is a glaring error [from India]. Hales and Buttler are playing the way they are and India are still playing old-fashioned powerplay cricket.”

Michael Atherton echoed Hussain’s view about England’s approach to exploiting the fielding restrictions and suggested it sent a stark warning to Pakistan.

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India captain Rohit Sharma says his side’s performance with the ball let them down in their 10-wicket defeat to England

“The game was won and lost at the start of each powerplay,” he said. “India basically let England’s bowlers settle – and you can argue it’s good bowling or cautious batting – but when England came out they did not let them settle. It was a huge contrast between the two teams.

“It kind of sends a message to the team you are about to play in the final.”

Watch England vs Pakistan in the T20 World Cup final this weekend on Sky Sports. Live coverage begins on Sunday from 7am on Sky Sports Golf.

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