Wellington, Feb 19: New Zealand cricket captain Brendon McCullum has voiced his support for his England counterpart Eoin Morgan who is going through a poor batting form. (Morgan can handle WC pressure)
World Cup Special
The two teams face each other in a World Cup Pool A match here Friday.
Morgan has been out for nought in four of his last five One-Day International (ODI) innings since scoring a century against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground in his first match as the official One-Day captain in a tri-series also featuring India.
McCullum, once a teammate of Morgan at the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), does see him as a threat in the encounter.
"I caught up with him last night. He's a champion bloke and one of my better cricketing mates from around the world.
"He's obviously going through a bit of a tough time but tough times don't last, tough blokes do," McCullum was quoted as saying by the New Zealand Herald Thursday.
"Hopefully we're able to keep him quiet tomorrow, but I'm confident at some point he'll bounce out of it."
The 33-year-old empathised with Morgan saying it is the hardest time to lead when struggling with your own form, but added the left-hander will be highly rewarded if he can just see this tough phase through.
"Over a period of time (form) is important but the hardest and most important time to lead is when you're struggling. That's when guys need to see you have it in you to think about the team, the game plan and driving the team ethos," he said.
"That's the hardest time but also the most rewarding when you come out the other side."
McCullum said the tough phase would help Morgan learn a lot about his game.
"Knowing 'Morgs' as I do, he will still be focusing on the team, albeit wanting to boost his own performance. It is tough but that's the game we play. It brings out different traits in people. That's when you learn a lot about yourself."