Сricket

England’s World Cup finalists thrilled to be must-see TV like 2005 Ashes side

Eoin Morgan says his World Cup heroes can make cricket cool again just like it was in 2005, thanks to their first ODI final in 27 years being broadcast on free-to-air TV.

Thanks to Thursday's semi-final walloping of Australia, Channel 4 have struck a deal with rights-holders Sky to show Sunday's final against New Zealand at Lord's live for the whole nation to get behind the England boys' attempt to win a first ODI World Cup.

“It is very cool,” said Morgan, who struck the winning runs to finish off the hapless Aussies at Edgbaston. “Particularly given the 2005 Ashes [which were also shown free on C4], for me, was sort of the day cricket became cool.

“Throughout the whole summer, the game was on the front and back page of every newspaper going around, everyone was talking about it. That is really good for the game and it's the game I love so it's great news that it's on free-to-air.”

Fans could be forgiven for getting nostalgic, especially with the Edgbaston crowd belting out a rendition of 'Cricket's coming home,' as the Aussies were put to the sword.

Morgan has been the driving force behind England's turnaround in fortunes since the miserable 2015 World Cup campaign and after their eight-wicket semis win — which saw Australia reduced to 14-3 as they batted first — there is little doubt his side are playing their best cricket at the right time.

Asked if cricket was indeed coming home, he said: “I wouldn't get too carried away yet!

“It is obviously a very exciting time for everybody and ourselves included. I think giving ourselves the opportunity for Sunday's final is brilliant. We'll be giving it everything we can in order to try to win that game.

“The performances in the last three games, we have got better and better as a group.

“I think Sunday's not a day to shy away from, it's a day to look forward to, much like today. We have created the opportunity to play in a World Cup Final. It will be a matter of the same again trying to produce everything that we can.”

Morgan describing the final as being England's chance to be cool is rather appropriate since man-of-the-match Chris Woakes referred to his skipper in much the same terms.

“Morgs is cool as ice with everything he does regardless of the situation,” said Woakes, after taking 3-20. “He is great to have as a captain because he just keeps everything simple and doesn’t change his emotions too much which in the heat of the battle is what you need sometimes to keep you mind clear.


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