Eoin Morgan could be England's greatest captain if he wins ICC T20 World Cup, says Ryan Sidebottom
Former seamer Ryan Sidebottom helped England to T20 glory in 2010 and says that Eoin Morgan has every chance of following up victory in the 50-over World Cup trophy with a second global title; England begin campaign against West Indies on Saturday, live on Sky Sports Cricket and Main Event
Last Updated: 21/10/21 6:18pm
Eoin Morgan could lay claim to being England's best-ever captain if he lifts the ICC T20 World Cup, says former team-mate Ryan Sidebottom.
Morgan's leadership has transformed England from 50-over flops in 2015 to 2019 World Cup champions and his side will begin their bid to claim a second global ICC title in as many years when they take on West Indies on Saturday - live on Sky Sports Cricket.
England begin the tournament as the ICC's top-ranked T20 team and Sidebottom, a key part of the side that won the competition in 2010, says more silverware could elevate Morgan's achievements above the likes of former skippers Mike Brearley, Michael Vaughan or Sir Andrew Strauss.
"Arguably he would be the greatest captain England has ever had, in terms of success on a global level and what he has brought to the England unit," Sidebottom said.
"All of those great captains were fantastic man managers and that's the beauty of Morgy, he gets the best out of every single player. You can clearly see they love playing for him. He knows them inside out, how they feel on the day and what they need at any time.
"You can see what a calming influence he is - never gets flustered, never shakes his head or shrugs his shoulders. He's always cool under pressure, no matter what, and I think that rubs off on his bowlers particularly.
"When you've got a captain who backs you it just means so much to a player, whether it's your first game or your 100th game. He speaks very, very well, he knows how he wants his players to be perceived and there's his batting style.
"With everything he brings to the table, could he be the greatest captain England has had? Most definitely."
Seamer Sidebottom played a key role in England's triumphant Caribbean campaign in 2010, with England favouring the variety offered by his left-arm angle.
Morgan - also part of that squad more than a decade ago - has two left-armers at his disposal in the shape of David Willey and Tymal Mills and Sidebottom says such variety boosts England's chances.
"That variation at the top of the order and at the death is huge," he said. "It makes it much more difficult for the batsmen.
"I think England have seen left-armers have become one of the best options in competitions around the world and now they're using it more regularly. You have Dave Willey, a genuine wicket-taker in the powerplay, and Tymal is someone England have been crying out for.
"He has different types of skills - from 90mph to a big change-up and he's going to be a huge part of this England line-up. There are definite similarities between this team and ours in the style of cricket, but they are so much better, stronger and more athletic than we are.
"It wouldn't surprise me if England win the trophy. That would be amazing after the last few years with Covid and everything else, to win another global tournament and get that feelgood factor back again."
Watch England begin their ICC T20 World Cup campaign against West Indies, live on Sky Sports Cricket and Main Event from 2.30pm on Saturday.