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IND vs ENG | Not about cementing the no.1 place but build up players for World Cup, insists Eoin Morgan 

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England lost the first ODI from a dominating position


IND vs ENG | Not about cementing the no.1 place but build up players for World Cup, insists Eoin Morgan 

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SportsCafe Desk


England skipper Eoin Morgan made it clear that they don't think much about their no.1 spot as for them it's about building players for the World Cup. He has also defended the aggressive style of the English batsmen and lauded the openers for their extremely positive batting in the first ODI.

England faced a fair bit of criticism for losing the first ODI from a commanding position on Tuesday at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune. From 175 for 3, they got bundled out on 251, losing the game by 66 runs, chasing a sub-par target of 318. In fact, the English openers were on a roll at one stage and had made 135 in merely 14.2 overs before Jason Roy was dismissed. If India manage to clean sweep England in the three-match ODI series, they will overtake them in the ICC ODI ranking and become the top side in the world. 

When asked about potentially losing the no.1 spot, English skipper Eoin Morgan revealed they are hardly fussed about the rankings and all that matters to them is building up a quality side for World Cup. 

"We don't fiercely guard that at all. We actually don't guard it at all. It's not something that we talk about in the change room. Everything is built towards planning, being competitive at a World Cup and trying to improve our skills over that period of time.

"It is not about cementing the no.1 spot. It is about building a group of players that will hopefully bring something of quality in a World Cup. If you talk about motivation and determination, it goes hand-in-hand," Morgan said in the post-match press conference, reported TOI. 

The World Cup-winning skipper also defended the gung-ho approach of the Three Lions, which was under the scanner, and stated that this is how they have played in the last five years. 

"I think the method in which we went about our business today is the right message in which we play and it has worked over the last five years for us. So that's really encouraging obviously on the back of our bowling performance on our two openers, the way that they played, and really controlled the game is extremely positive.

"If we played really well and were on top form we would have chased that total down in no time. But that wasn't meant to be...India are a top side to beat, one of the best sides in the world, majority of the time,"  he added.

Morgan also lauded the Pune wicket that had assistance for seamers all throughout the game. 

"I can't fault the guys today. I thought they were brilliant, they did exactly what was expected on the wicket. Even before the game I would take it 380... The wicket was outstanding, it offered a little bit for seamers and was beautiful if you managed to get yourself in."

The English skipper, however, wants the boys to learn from their mistakes and correct them in the second ODI on Friday. 

"I don't see areas that we like to build in partnerships after the two openers got out. So, again, areas of improvement, we'll be looking at that and trying to build partnerships, but I don't envisage huge changes," Morgan concluded.

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