Eoin Morgan
England's captain Eoin Morgan in action during the ICC Men’s Twenty20 World Cup cricket match against Sri Lanka at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on November 1, 2021. Image Credit: AFP

Eoin Morgan has become the most successful T20 captain in the world. Now, how do you judge a captain and his captaincy? Statistics provide the win percentages, but does that make a captain a good captain?

Leadership skills cannot be quantified, but their effect is reflected in results. In cricket, captaincy assumes another dimension. The broader strategy can be chalked out by a team, including the coach, but the situations change quickly on the field. And changing scenarios require changes in tactics. So a captain has to think on his feet.

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In white-ball cricket, the situation changes by the minute, and Morgan has been very successful. With the win over Sri Lanka in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, Morgan has 43 victories under his belt, surpassing Mahendra Singh Dhoni of India and Asghar Afghan of Afghanistan as the most successful captain in T20 Internationals.

Morgan’s influence on England has been huge. He has turned them into a white-ball cricket powerhouse. Before Morgan arrived on the England scene — that was around 11 years ago — white-ball cricket was treated more like a nuisance by the England and Wales Cricket Board. Morgan changed all that. He gave up ambitions of playing red-ball cricket and focused on limited-over games.

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He has built an England side stacked with enviable talents. And results are there to see. Around 20 per cent of England’s ODI success came during his tenure as captain: a time when he contributed liberally with game-changing knocks.

As he becomes the most successful T20I captain, Morgan’s form with the bat has deserted him. He cobbled together 40 against Sri Lanka yesterday and helped Jos Buttler rescue England with a 112-run stand in Sharjah. But it was a far cry from the Morgan of old. At 35, maybe it’s too much to expect him to turn the clock back.

But don’t be surprised if you find Morgan holding the T20 World Cup aloft on November 14. He’s Captain Courageous.