Collingwood happy with his own form

Paul Collingwood at a press-conference

Dhaka, Feb 19, 2011

Paul Collingwood was a relieved man after ending a wretched run of low scores on the eve of England’s World Cup campaign with 65 in a warm-up win against Pakistan.

The Durham all-rounder also took three wickets with his medium-pacers, which could prove effective on sub-continental pitches, as England beat Pakistan by 67 runs in their final practice fixture on Friday.

Collingwood’s score was his first fifty in any form of cricket for three months following a struggling tour of Australia where he made little contribution with the bat during either England’s Ashes triumph or 6-1 one-day series loss.

Indeed, it was in Australia where the 34-year-old announced his retirement from Test cricket. But Collingwood, a fine fielder, still believes he has a role in one-day cricket and his contribution against Pakistan where new opener Kevin Pietersen made 66 and Stuart Broad took a second straight five-wicket haul was perhaps the most heartening aspect of the victory from an England perspective.

“On a personal note, it was nice to get some runs,” Collingwood told reporters. “It’s been quite a frustrating few months for me, not being able to contribute as much as I would have liked. “Even though it was a warm-up game, I thought it was important I spent some time in the middle and tried to get that confidence going again — and thankfully, it worked out well.” Collingwood added he had almost been at his wits end in trying to fathom out what had gone wrong with his batting.

“When it goes on for a while, you start to look for all sorts of reasons – technique, everything,” he said.

“But in the end, you’ve just got to keep working, know it’s still there and it will eventually come right,” he added, ahead of England’s Group B opener against the Netherlands in Nagpur on Tuesday. “I probably had a little bit of luck early doors; sometimes you need that kind of luck,” Collingwood explained. “I probably just gave myself a little bit more of a chance to get myself up to 20.

“I guess when I’ve been taking the risks in the last 10 or so innings, that haven’t been coming off, it can be the difference between getting out and going on and making a big contribution.” Friday’s match was the first between England and Pakistan since the spot-fixing scandal that overshadowed last year’s series between the sides and saw three Pakistan players banned for five years each.

However, Collingwood insisted relations between the teams had been above board on Friday, saying: “A lot of things have happened since last summer, and I think both teams just wanted to get on with the game. “We’ve got a big competition ahead of us. It wasn’t all about England versus Pakistan; it was about putting in a good performance and trying to win the game. “I thought we went out and did that very well.”