Collingwood credits Strauss and Flower for T20 change
Gros Islet: England captain Paul Collingwood said his team, who eased into the Twenty20 World Cup semi-finals on Monday, were reaping the benefits of a year of hard work behind the scenes.
England beat New Zealand in St Lucia to head into the last four having won all three Super Eight games.
The English have not excelled in the shorter forms of the game in recent years but they have looked the part in the Caribbean and Collingwood said credit went to Test and ODI skipper Andrew Strauss and coach Andy Flower.
“I think we have put a lot of hard work in during the last year with Andy Flower taking over and (working with) Straussy getting into a different direction in terms of some of our training techniques and trying to work on more power in the field and obviously with the batting,” Collingwood told a news connference.
“Some of the things that we have been doing behind the scenes are starting to work out in the middle which is obviously a good thing to see. The boys are absolutely delighted and their confidence is really high,” he said.
The victory came after Pakistan beat South Africa to ensure England’s progress and Collingwood was impressed that despite little being at stake his team stuck at their task.
“I am delighted with the boys, it could have been easy to sit back and relax given that we had got through to the semis.
“We kept drilling into them that momentum in this form of the game is absolutely crucial and getting into winning habit is vital and they’ve gone out and beaten a very good side,” he said.
The victory came without key batsman Kevin Pietersen who skipped the match to be at home with his wife and new born child and Collingwood was pleased to see runs coming from other parts of the batting line-up such as Tim Bresnan who made 23 not out.
“It is going to take a team effort if we are going to go all the way, it is going to take all of us to put our hands up at certain points along the way and the boys are doing that, we have got a real strong line up,” he said.
“I’m also delighted with the bowlers with the way they have adjusted to different wickets, this is a completely different wicket to Barbados,” he said, before dishing out praise to aggressive opening pair Craig Kieswetter and Michael Lumb.
“The way they take the game to the opposition and give us that real kick start it really does take the pressure off the middle order,” Collingwood said.
“We have to keep the focus and the momentum going for the semis, it is going to be tough but we have got two games and we could win a World Cup”.