London: Eoin Morgan said extending his England career would have made him feel “an imposter” as the World Cup-winning captain retired from international cricket on Tuesday.
Morgan, who will continue to play domestic cricket, announced the end of his time as an international player at Lord’s, the scene of England’s 2019 50-over World Cup triumph.
The 35-year-old batsman oversaw England’s transformation from a side that suffered a woeful first-round exit at the 2015 World Cup to one-day kings four years later.
Dublin-born Morgan bows out as England’s all-time leading run-scorer in one-day international and Twenty20 cricket with 6,957 and 2,458 runs respectively.
His tally of 225 ODI appearances and 115 in T20Is are also England records. But Morgan has made just two fifties from his past 28 international innings across the two white-ball formats and was twice out for nought during England’s recent ODI series away to the Netherlands.
He awoke in Amsterdam last Monday knowing his time as an England cricketer was up and missed the final match of the series with a groin injury.
Neither the thought of one last England appearance, or the prospect of staying on until the T20 World Cup in Australia later this year, held any appeal for Morgan.
“It goes against everything I stand for, I just would have felt like an imposter,” he said, when asked about an England farewell appearance.
“I’m very happy with my decision. The day it hit me I was emotional, it was a difficult day, but since then I’ve been very content. I’d reached the end of the road.
“The World Cup is in October and the feeling that day, it felt a million miles away.”
Morgan has been planning for retirement and will now join Sky television to commentate on his former teammates during England’s white-ball matches against India and South Africa next month. In the meantime, he wants to make a clean break with the England set-up, giving new white-ball coach Matthew Mott and his successor as captain a free hand. But he could yet take up a future off-field role in cricket, with Morgan already studying for a post-graduate diploma in strategic leadership.
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