Eoin Morgan is one man whom English cricket will forever be indebted to for transforming their limited-overs cricket team and for initiating a culture that saw them become the ODI world champions for the first time, even though by a technicality when they lifted the 2019 ICC World Cup at home.
England's disastrous campaign at the 2015 ICC World Cup was a wake-up call for the ECB and things needed to change to ensure England caught up with the way other teams were playing ODI cricket. Captain Morgan reminisced the journey while speaking to his IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders.
"In 2007, 2011 and 2015, we were badly hurt. We were unprepared, way behind in a way everybody else was playing the game, in particular 2015. We were hammered up and down in New Zealand and Australia, we struggled in pretty much every game. But I think if that was an Ashes series in 2007, 2011 and 2015, our preparation and strategy would have been on point. So, the potential was always there but the focus wasn't," Morgan was quoted as saying by the KKR website.
The final match between England and New Zealand was the most exciting 50-over World Cup final ever. The match ended in a tie and the resulting Super Over, that followed, also ended in a tie. England were declared champions by virtue of hitting more boundaries in the match, which was the pre-decided rule to declare the winners of the match in case the Super Over also ended in a tie.
"The final was the most dramatic game of cricket and also the best game of cricket that has ever been played, which contributes to the hype of it. It has also lifted the profile of the game like we have never seen.
"The game was so tight, right till the end as tight a game as you'll ever play," Morgan added.
England's win though was not a flash in the pan. Along with India, they were the pre-tournament favorites and were the most destructive ODI team at that moment. Morgan said that the journey of four years that culminated with the team becoming world champions will stay in the memory for a long time to come.
"The journey that we were on for the full four years, becoming world No. 1, being the batting team that scored the most 300s, the most 350s, the most 400s, the most 450s - building those memories along the way, memories that will last for a long period of time and friendships that will last the whole lives was probably the most rewarding thing," he signed off.