There'll be a section of the Irish population who'll never be comfortable with having an Irishman captaining the English cricket team (as evidenced by the replies to this Leo Varadkar tweet). Whatever your thoughts on Eoin Morgan - who played for Ireland but is a dual passport holder, with a mother who was born in Orford in England - wearing the England shirt, we can at least take some pride in the fact that Morgan has been an outstanding representative of his home nation in the aftermath of England's insanely dramatic Cricket World Cup win yesterday.
If you don't follow cricket, the World Cup final swung on one of the most baffling and fortuitous plays in recent memory.
What a scrappy but intense way for England to win the World Cup. There were two big moments before the super over, the two sixes from Ben Stokes, one because the fielder stepped on the boundary and this iconic moment pic.twitter.com/paArbce0jH
— Arsenal Column (@ArsenalColumn) July 14, 2019
In the post match press conference, Morgan was asked if the 'luck of the Irish' was partly responsible for that fateful Ben Stokes six.
Morgan's answer to one of the most banal stock press conference questions was incredible: 'We had Allah with us as well. I spoke to Adil [Rashid] who said we had Allah with us. We had the rub of the green. It actually epitomises our team. There's quite diverse backgrounds, cultures and guys growing up in different countries and are at the stage of where they're at in their career. To find humour in the situation we were in at the time was pretty cool.'
— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) July 14, 2019
Brilliant from Eoin Morgan, when asked if England won because of the luck of the Irish.
"I spoke to Adil and he said that Allah was with us. So Allah was with us as well!" #CWC19
— Vithushan Ehantharajah (@Vitu_E) July 14, 2019
It's a comment that took 30 seconds to make, but given the moronic blusterings that the win has inspired in prominent Tory windbags and the place of cricket in the English sporting consciousness, it's quite a profound one. At a time when the hardline Tory No-Deal cabal (many of whom are cricket-lovers) seem poised to finally deliver their calamitous version of Brexit, Morgan's decision to credit diversity - and Allah! - in England's World Cup win is pretty radical. I wonder would an English captain who was born and raised in England have the humility - and cajones - to thank Allah for a World Cup victory.
One wonders how this perspective might be applied to a few problems stifling the UK these days, namely xenophobia and the longing for bygone imperial glory. Eoin Morgan's not the captain the English nation deserve, but they're very lucky that they got him.