Morgan: IPL set me up for Test summer

ENGLAND batsman Eoin Morgan insists he made the correct decision to gamble with his Test future by fulfilling his Indian Premier League commitments.

The talented Irishman secured his inclusion for the first Test against Sri Lanka, which starts on Thursday, after scoring 193 against the tourists for the Lions in last week’s warm-up match.

Ravi Bopara, who shunned the IPL riches in order to catch the selectors’ attention by piling up the runs for Essex, was thought to be the favourite to inherit the retired Paul Collingwood’s No6 spot.

But Morgan’s superbly timed innings turned the tide in his favour and he believes his needs were better served by appearing in the IPL rather than plugging away in Division Two of the County Championship for Middlesex.

“The learning curve I went through in IPL last year, the pressure I was put under, the fact of having to produce your skills time after time in massive situations, it helps my game a lot and I get a lot of confidence from it,” said Morgan (left).

National selector Geoff Miller confirmed on Sunday he would be seeking words with Morgan in order to clarify where his priorities lie, but the 24-year-old was unequivocal in his desire to represent England at Test level above anything else.

“My priorities are quite clear – Test match cricket comes first, always has done,” said Morgan. “Part of my progression and sort of learning curve is the IPL, but Test match cricket has always come first.”