Saturday, December 15, 2018 | ePaper
Morgan backs England to learn from Scots' shock in time for Australia
Eoin Morgan is confident England can learn the lessons of their shock six-run loss to Scotland in Edinburgh on Sunday in time for a one-day international series against Australia.
The 2019 World Cup hosts have just a few days to recover from a stunning one-day international defeat before they face title-holders Australia in the first of a five-match series at The Oval on Wednesday.
Scotland, buoyed by Calum MacLeod's magnificent 140 not out, posted their highest-ever ODI total of 371 for five.
It looked as if England, who went into the match as the number one-ranked side in ODI cricket, might chase that down while opener Jonny Bairstow was making 105 and later on during an eighth-wicket stand of 71 between Moeen Ali (46) and Liam Plunkett (47 not out).
But Scotland's bowlers kept taking wickets and when paceman Safyaan Sharif had No 11 Mark Wood plumb lbw with seven balls to spare, England were 365 all out.
Defeat raised fresh questions about England's ability to win one-off, winner-takes-all fixtures following last year's Champions Trophy semi-final loss to Pakistan.
But having seen England beat Australia 4-1 in an ODI series Down Under earlier this year, captain Morgan was confident this loss would not do lasting damage to England's morale.
- 'Good practice' -
"A one-off game like this, to bring your best game is very difficult to do, they played well and deserved the result," said Morgan.
"It's not the end of the world for us, it was a really good run out and good to have a practice coming into the series against Australia.
"The level of expectation has been high around the team for a while, it doesn't get higher than being number one in the world.
"I don't think we were far away, we go to a ground now that we know really well in The Oval, and we'll be up for the challenge."
Morgan, however, accepted they had been well below the standard needed to win in what was their first 50-over match of the British season.