Collingwood happy with low T20 expectations
Paul Collingwood believes England can exploit their role as unfancied outsiders and become dangerous dark horses in the World Twenty20.
The England captain watched with satisfaction as his side completed a six-wicket win over Scotland in their opening warm-up match at Trent Bridge following an unbeaten 53 off 39 balls from Kevin Pietersen.
They complete their build-up to the tournament with another warm-up encounter against West Indies at Lord's later today, but even a comprehensive win is unlikely to raise expectations of a home success in the tournament.
But Collingwood believes without that pressure, England can thrive during the coming weeks and perhaps build up enough momentum to become serious challengers on home soil.
Asked whether there was a lot of pressure as hosts, Collingwood stressed: "We've got a slight advantage knowing the conditions, but it's probably the other way around and there are not a lot of expectations on our shoulders.
"We're very much dark horses and hopefully that will give the boys a bit more of a licence. The belief and the freedom to go out there and express yourself is important in this form of the game so hopefully that gives the boys a bit more of a licence and they won't have as much pressure on them."
Chasing Scotland's 136 for five yesterday, Pietersen sealed their triumph with an over to spare on his first England appearance since missing the one-day series triumph against West Indies with Achilles problems.
It was a laboured rather than a spectacular display by England, but Collingwood was impressed - and particularly by the form showed by Pietersen in chasing down their target.
"He's obviously raring to go, he's had a few weeks off through injury and he's got that buzz about him," enthused Collingwood.
"He's got a big smile on his face and I thought it was a really mature innings from him and we're going to need more of those kind of innings off him during the tournament.
"There are obviously areas where we could have played a little bit better but I thought the way we knocked the runs off there and the way KP took the lead role and knocked the runs off was excellent.
"Some of our bowling we need to work on a little bit but I thought our skills were excellent and the angles and plans worked really well at the death."
Collingwood confirmed that England may field a stronger side later today after James Anderson (left ankle) and off-spinner Graeme Swann (back) were rested as a precaution against niggles in their final match before the tournament opener against Holland at Lord's on Friday.
"There are obviously areas we're going to have a look at and yesterday was more of an experimental side, but we'll make decisions when we get our heads together and our next side will be more like the side that will be playing on Friday," he added.
Paul Scholes: Manchester United vs Liverpool - I don't understand why Brendan Rodgers was not more attacking against Basel
Jesus Christ plays for Chelsea - that's what one in five children thinks
Transfer Talk: Nemanja Vidic to return to Manchester United; Hazard to leave Chelsea; Sunderland want Radamel Falcao
Frank Warren column: Don't bet on Amir Khan landing pay day against Floyd Mayweather
Manchester United transfer news: Kevin Strootman move edges closer
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
New era of cheap oil 'will destroy green revolution'
Ukip founder Alan Sked and Nigel Farage 'begged Enoch Powell to stand as a candidate'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant