Don't expect any Colly wobbles against the Dutch this time
Sunday 20 February 2011
The last time Paul Collingwood played against Holland, he was the England captain and the Dutch pulled off one of the more remarkable victories in limited-overs history. But while that four-wicket defeat by Holland in the opening match of England's World Twenty20 campaign in 2009 remains a recurring nightmare, the Durham all-rounder is confident that both he and the team are peaking just in time for the official start of their 50-over campaign against the Dutch in Nagpur on Tuesday.
Collingwood flew from Dhaka to Nagpur yesterday with reason for personal satisfaction after an overdue half-century in the warm-up victory over Pakistan in Fatullah, also picking up three wickets with his dolly mixtures.
He was heartened by the team's collective efforts. Reflecting on a 67-run win in which Kevin Pietersen top-scored in his new role as opener and Stuart Broad took five wickets for the second successive match, Collingwood said: "It was a top team performance. It was probably the template of how we want to play one-day cricket. We did a lot of very good things. The way Stuart Broad is taking early wickets puts the opposition under pressure, and the way we bowled in the middle overs and fielded meant we were creating pressure and always had them behind the eight-ball.
"Ravi [Bopara] and me put on a good partnership and KP batted well up front, very sensibly, and we kept wickets in hand for the last 10 overs. That's what we want to do in one-day cricket."
Collingwood knows that Holland cannot be taken lightly but he counters that England now know what it is like to win global silverware – last year's world T20 crown – while a gradual reduction in their injury list is another good sign that they can do well on the subcontinent. Collingwood is over his back problem and Tim Bresnan is back in harness after his calf trouble. England are also due to welcome the spinner Graeme Swann back into the fold today, when he flies in after attending the birth of his first child Wilfred. "He sent us a text with the name," Collingwood said. "We're all looking forward to Swanny coming back into the dressing room, bringing his humour back in."
There was little surprise at Swann's unusual choice of name for his son. "Not many call them Wilfred," Collingwood agreed. "But with Swanny, he could have been called anything."
England v Holland is live on Sky Sports 1 from 8.30am on Tuesday
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