England Captain Eoin Morgan said that the team’s dramatic two-run win over South Africa in their second ODI is good preparation for the forthcoming ICC Champions Trophy.
South Africa, the top ranked team in the world, needed just ten runs from the final ten balls of their innings with five wickets remaining. However, Mark Wood produced an excellent final over that cost just four runs to seal victory.
Speaking after the game Morgan said, “Those are the sort of games you really want to win because you learn a lot more from them. The game got away from us quite a lot but Woody came up at the end there with the goods, which was awesome. I think the tournament is bound to be pretty tight. There are a lot of good teams around so this sort of prep today I think is ideal. I wouldn’t say all the questions about our death bowling are answered – we’re always trying to improve.”
Ben Stokes, who struck 101, expressed a similar sentiment and he is hopeful that the team can now do well in the ICC Champions Trophy.
After he successful hit 11 fours and 3 sixes from 79 balls Stokes said, “It’s always nice hitting the ball well and knowing you’ve got a bit of form behind you. These three one-dayers are a great opportunity for that, for the whole team. We’ve seen Jos [Buttler] hitting the ball nicely, which is great for us going forward. Hopefully we can just continue going forward and continue this form into the Champions Trophy.”
In regards to the knee injury scare in the series opener Stokes said that it is only affecting his bowling but that batting, fielding and running are fine.