England may be the No.1 ranked T20 side of the world with a healthy 7-rating point lead over second-placed India but their limited-overs captain Eoin Morgan is not ready to term his team as the favourite in the T20 World Cup slated to take place in India later this year. Morgan, in fact, picked Virat Kohli’s India as favourites of the T20 World Cup.
Morgan made those comments ahead of first T20I against India in Ahmedabad. The England captain said India will have the edge over others as the World Cup will be played in their backyard.
“Given that the World Cup is here, I do think they will enter the World Cup as favourites, so this is going to be a great test for us and a great challenge and throughout the whole tour and not just for T20s,” said Morgan in the pre-match virtual press conference ahead of Friday’s encounter in Ahmedabad.
Morgan said the Virat Kohli-led India are a very difficult side to beat in their backyard and the limited overs matches will be a challenge for his team.
“It is going to be from our point of view a learning process, going through what positions we might find ourselves in seven month’s time at the World Cup, with a perfect case scenario that we are playing against one of the best sides in the world, in their backyard and we know they are very difficult to beat.
“I do, I probably replicate the answer. India are the team to beat given we are playing them away from home. They are a very difficult side to beat in India,” Morgan said ahead of the series opener at the Narendra Modi Stadium.
According to the left-hander, all his players are fit and available for selection. And that includes pacer Jofra Archer, too.
“Yeah, everybody is fit to play and Jofra is available for the series,” he said.
Morgan, however, refused to speak about the team composition.
“No, I am not giving you a head’s up,” quipped the English skipper when asked about the opening combination.
He was also asked about Archer’s workload management and Morgan said the 25-year-old pacer will be rested before the T20 World Cup.
“I think it’s with the three-format players that we have, they are a handful of guys. They are managed really well, you look back at the backend of December and also January, Jofra had off and there would be different pockets throughout.
“… After the IPL, towards summer and before the World Cup, where Jofra will be rested and will be really well looked after both physically and mentally,” Morgan signed off.
The upcoming T20 World Cup will be held in India later this year.
(With PTI inputs)