Champions Trophy: England team the 'most talented group of players I've played with' says Eoin Morgan

Abhinav Kini
Eoin Morgan

England's limited overs captain Eoin Morgan has said the current crop of players in the squad are the most talented he has played with, ahead of the ICC Champions Trophy in June.

England and Wales will host the tournament, which is scheduled from 1 June to 18 June as reigning champions India will defend their crown.

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While England have never won the competition despite reaching the final on two occasions, Morgan says the current side are more than capable of creating history.

"The talent and ability in the side is second to none," Morgan said, as quoted on BBC. "I firmly believe this is the most talented group of players I've ever played with. I've been fortunate to play with some fantastic cricketers over the years."

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South African legend and current bowling consultant for the Sri Lanka team, Allan Donald, recently said that the Champions Trophy was a "brutal" tournament where a single mistake could cost a team. Morgan agrees with that viewpoint as he hopes England use the tournament as a springboard to eventually lift the 2019 World Cup.

"It is important to recognise the Champions Trophy is the halfway stage towards the 2019 World Cup and that's the real trophy we want to be lifting," he added. "That is the ultimate goal. This tournament is very relevant for us at the moment given the progression that we've made."

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"It is a very ruthless tournament — you have to win every game. Going in with that expectation and hype is very good for us as a group.''

Morgan's side will prepare for the tournament with a two-match One Day International (ODI) series with Ireland before following it up with a three-match series against the current best team in the format in South Africa.

The first ODI game against Ireland will take place at the Bristol County Ground on 5 May.

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