Cricket Expert & Columnist
Morgan's biggest Test
Michael Atherton considers how Eoin Morgan will fare on his Test debut against Bangladesh.
Last Updated: 25/05/10 8:05am
England take on Bangladesh at Lord's on Thursday in the first of their two-match Test series - and the result, I'm sad to say, is fairly predictable.
Eoin Morgan will make his debut, Steven Finn will make his home debut at his home ground and England will win comfortably within four days.
Bangladesh's bowling is not going to pose any threat and, although they have two or three batsmen with some ability, they are very flaky and everyone expects England to win.
They will want to win well, though. England will be looking to use these Test matches this summer as a pre-cursor for the Ashes and hopefully get a settled side, keep winning and make sure they're in good knick for the winter.
Although the World Twenty20 was a different form of the game, with a slightly different squad, England's impressive victory is the sort of thing that will bring confidence to the dressing room.
One of the chief beneficiaries of that tournament was Dubliner Morgan, who the selectors have taken a punt on.
He only has a fairly modest First Class record but they have obviously seen plenty that they like in the way he plays and I believe his temperament at the crease will stand him in good stead in Test matches.
He looks a good player and I don't see why he wouldn't be able to transfer his talents in one form of the game to another.
I don't think you'll see him reverse sweeping and scooping the ball over fine leg in Test match cricket, but he has got plenty of other shots which are more orthodox and less risky. He has shown he also has plenty of power too, which is no bad thing.
I can see no reason why he wouldn't be successful with the Test team.
Similarly, I think Finn has all the makings of a Test bowler. He is tall, he is quick and he looks the ideal bowler for Australia, and that's really why they want to play him now; to get a bit more experience into him before the winter.
He bowled well in Bangladesh but there was absolutely nothing in the pitch for him. There will be a lot more pace and bounce this week at Lord's and that will suit Finn.
It will also disconcert the Bangladesh batsmen, who aren't used to that sort of thing. I'm sure Finn can expect to enjoy a bit more success here than he did in the sub-continent.
Skipper Strauss returns
The Test will also see the return of captain Andrew Strauss to the team. I still think it was wrong for him to step aside for such a long time, just one year into the job.
Sport changes pretty quickly, things happen, people move on and you can quickly get forgotten, so I think that adds a bit of unnecessary pressure on him.
But it's a decision he made. Strauss has a fairly solid temperament, he has been around a fair bit and I don't think he will have trouble adjusting back.
He may feel he has missed out a bit with the World Twenty20 and it might be slightly awkward for him coming back, but the opposition are going to be so easy I don't think there are going to be any problems.