JUST a month after being devastated when he thought his World Cup hopes were over, Eoin Morgan rejoins his England teammates in India today.
His second chance comes after Kevin Pietersen finally succumbed to his hernia problem and decided he could not carry on for the remainder of the tournament.
England team director Andy Flower quickly came to terms with the news - which Pietersen said had left him “absolutely devastated” - although he acknowledged that they are losing a major player.
“He’s a world class player and I thought he had formed an interesting opening partnership with Andrew Strauss,” said Flower. “In three of the four games they’ve put on significant partnerships which have kicked off good batting performances.”
Morgan had to gain approval from the ICC to play in the competition after being announced as Pietersen’s replacement.He was included in the original squad but missed out after breaking a finger in the build-up to the tournament.
Flower says that being able to call on a player of Morgan’s quality means the team can move forward.
“Eoin Morgan is an exciting cricketer and it’s going to be good having him back.”
Flower said Pietersen had been struggling with the injury for some time, but remains hopeful he will return in time for a busy summer.
“He’s got a problem and I’ve seen the scan myself,” said Flower. “He has been dealing with it for a number of weeks now so he has got to go and get that sorted out and hopefully he will be ready for the first Test gainst Sri Lanka in the English summer.”
Pietersen was out in the first over of Sunday’s thrilling six run win over South Africa and also bowled eight overs but he laboured in the field.
Decision time now for Flower and captain Strauss is the opening partner for Strauss. Morgan bats in the middle order with a reputation as “a finisher.”
It could mean Ian Bell moving up to open when they play their next game against Bangladesh on Friday when a win guarantees a quarter-final place.