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England captain Morgan defends missing ODI for IPL

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Wellington, Feb 19 (IANS) England captain Eoin Morgan has defended his involvement in the Indian Premier League (IPL) after it emerged he would miss a One-Day International to play in the lucrative Twenty20 event.

Morgan was bought by Sunrisers Hyderabad for Rs.2 crore during Monday’s IPL auction.

England are scheduled to play a One-Day international against Ireland in Dublin May 8 but Morgan won’t be leading the side as he has made himself available for the entire duration of IPL.

He was given clearance by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to play in the whole of IPL, from April 8 to May 24.

“Yeah, that means I won’t go to Ireland,” he was quoted as saying by sport24.co.za Thursday.

“The chairman of selectors and the director of cricket have allowed the guys who have got picked up in the IPL, or went into the auction, to miss that Ireland game in order to expose themselves to opportunities in the IPL in order to learn more about their game.”

He refused to accept it was odd, given his role as captain, to miss the Dublin match: “No I don’t think it is. Probably if you’re being a little short-sighted it might do, but I think in the longer run it will serve me well.”

“It does give you great confidence, you learn a lot along the way and it gives you great energy. Going back to that (the IPL) is a huge privilege,” he added.

Morgan was out for nought in England’s 111-run defeat by Australia in their cricket World Cup opener Saturday.

It was his fourth duck in five innings. England play against New Zealand in Wellington Friday.

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