Geoffrey Boycott
Geoffrey Boycott

Melbourne: Pacer James Anderson Friday ridiculed comments made by Geoffrey Boycott about the batting of England’s World Cup captain Eoin Morgan. Former England batsman Boycott said Morgan was not “as good as he thinks he is” and “not so clever” against top-class bowling, reports BBC.

But pace bowler Anderson responded: “That’s rich coming from him. Morgan is a world-class player and has been for over 100 games. We know how destructive he is when he’s in form.” Boycott, who scored 1,082 runs in 34 One-Day Internationals (ODIs) for England, at an average of 36.06, was passing judgement on a poor sequence of form that has seen Morgan dismissed for less than 20 in nine of his last 11 ODI innings.

The 32-year-old Anderson, though, defended his captain. “He has been great for us. We’re hopeful he can get some form. We’ve seen him get a hundred on this trip against Australia.” Anderson was speaking before England’s opening World Cup game against co-hosts Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground Saturday.

More than 90,000 spectators are expected to be in attendance as England look to improve on a run that has seen them lose 13 of their last 15 ODIs against Australia Down Under.

“It’s obviously a big game for both sides. As a cricketer, you want to play in big games like this. We’re guessing that the majority of the crowd will be against us, so it’s something we’re prepared for. It’s something that we have to try to soak up and enjoy,” said Anderson.

Anderson has taken 264 wickets in 188 matches since making his debut at the MCG in 2002. “We feel confident that we can beat anyone on our day. Confidence is building in our team and we’re hoping that we can put things together when it really matters.”

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