DUBLIN-BORN ALL-ROUNDER Eoin Morgan may yet make an appearance at this year’s Cricket World Cup after he was called up to English squad yesterday in place of the injured Kevin Pietersen.
Pietersen featured in England’s opening four games of the tournament, contributing 131 runs as he opened the side’s batting alongside Andrew Strauss.
Although it was reported at the weekend that the batsman would postpone surgery on a hernia until after the World Cup, it emerged yesterday that the injury would rule him out of any further participation.
Despite England coach Andy Flower’s hope that his opener would be able to “bite the bullet” and continue, Pietersen has flown home to England while Morgan has been drafted in to join the squad in Chittagong.
Unfortunately he says the pain is too debilitating, and he can’t go on like that. So it’s a pretty simple decision to replace him.
Morgan’s recall marks a remarkable change in fortunes for the 24-year-old Dubliner. Last month, he was ruled out of the tournament after sustaining a broken finger during England’s recent one-day series against Australia.
Although he may not be fully fit to contribute immediately, the English medical staff are hopeful that he will ready for the knock-out stages of tournament should England make it that far. The quarter-finals begin on 23 March.
England’s campaign has also been disrupted by an injury to fast-bowler Stuart Broad who has been ruled out of the remainder of the tournament with a strain in his side.
A statement from the English Cricket Board indicated that the severity of Broad’s injury would be assessed in the next 24 to 48 hours, though the team’s medics were quick to stress that the problem was not related to the abdominal tear which the 24-year-old suffered during the Ashes.
Surrey’s Chris Tremlett, who was already travelling with the team, has been promoted to the squad in Broad’s absence.
Meanwhile, Ireland face some injury concerns of their own ahead of Friday morning’s test against the West Indies in Mohali.
The camp remain hopeful that Trent Johnston will recover from the knee injury which saw him limp off after just five overs of Sunday’s narrow defeat to India. Johnson’s short-lived appearance in Bangalore once again underscored his importance to the team, with the Railway Union man taking the important early wickets of Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir before hobbling off.
Subsequent hospital scans showed no fracture or ligament damage to Johnston’s knee.
Ireland are also awaiting news on the progress of Andre Botha who is fighting to shake off a groin strain which he sustained in the warm-up prior to Ireland’s game against England.