Collingwood savours 'special moment'
Paul Collingwood showered praise on his players after he became the first England captain to lift a major global trophy.
England’s seven-wicket trouncing of Australia in the ICC World Twenty20 final at the Kensington Oval in Barbados had an almost anti-climactic ease about it after 35 barren years without a trophy.
No-one needed to remind Collingwood of what he and his team had achieved, after a fine performance in the field restricted the old enemy to a below-par 147 for six - and then Craig Kieswetter and Kevin Pietersen led the charge to victory, achieved with three overs to spare.
Man-of-the-match Kieswetter hit 63 off 49 balls and man-of-the-tournament Pietersen took his tally to 248 with 47 off 31 deliveries, sharing a second-wicket stand of 111 in 11.2 overs.
“This is a very special moment. The guys deserve everything they’ve got today,” said Collingwood, who had the privilege of hitting the winning runs after Pietersen and Kieswetter perished in quick succession late on.
“We’ve won a World Cup, and you can never take that away from us.
“We thoroughly deserve the victory, because of the way we’ve played throughout the tournament. I’m absolutely delighted with the guys.
“We’ve had a lot of belief, and the guys have thought very well for themselves and made the right decisions. In the end, we’ve turned up on a big occasion like this and we’ve performed.”
Collingwood’s team have gone one better than those led to finals but no further by great England captains of the past such as Mike Brearley, Mike Gatting, Graham Gooch and Michael Vaughan.
“This is right up there, with the best. To be the first (England) team to win a World Cup is very special,” Collingwood added.
“We knew it was a monkey on our back. We knew what it meant, and that is why I am so pleased that these last two performances in such pressurised situations were absolutely spot-on.
“I think belief has been the key, as soon as we got the squad together - seeing how much power we have in the squad.
“You can see from the way the guys have gone out from first ball, believing in themselves and taking it to the opposition and playing a brand of cricket that is unlike England in the past.
“I think a lot of credit goes to every single player in the dressing room to have the confidence to go out there and really give it their best shots and have no regrets.”