Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Now It's Win or Bust for Slipshod England; Collision Course: England Batsman Kevin Pietersen Loses His Bat after Colliding with Shaun Pollock and Is Run out for 15 in Cape Town

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Now It's Win or Bust for Slipshod England; Collision Course: England Batsman Kevin Pietersen Loses His Bat after Colliding with Shaun Pollock and Is Run out for 15 in Cape Town

Article excerpt

Byline: DAVID LLOYD

ENGLAND are facing their third 'must-win' match of the year against NewZealand after letting a golden chance for victory slip through their fingers inCape Town last night.

Paul Collingwood's team would almost certainly have beaten South Africa if theyhad not messed up seven opportunities in the field. As it is, they need avictory in Durban tomorrow to give themselves a realistic change of reachingthe World Twenty20 semi-finals.

Seven months ago, flights home were provisionally booked when England went intoa do-or-die encounter with New Zealand at Brisbane, only for Paul Collingwood'scentury and some brilliant bowling from Andrew Flintoff to ease them into atriangular tournament final which ended with an even more unexpected triumphover Australia.

But, come the World Cup in March, it was the Kiwis who easily won a vital groupgame in St Lucia and progressed to the semi-finals.

Now, having drawn a blank last night in their first Super Eight match byhanding South Africa a 19-run success, England know they must beat both NewZealand tomorrow and India on Wednesday in order to reach the knock-out stage.

Collingwood (right) said: "We usually respond pretty positively in thesesituations and I'm sure the boys will be wanting to do that.

We're not down and out as yet and I'm sure we'll get a good response from allof them." England bowled poorly to begin with during last Thursday's victoryagainst Zimbabwe. And, 24 hours later, their batting failed horribly asAustralia trounced them.

Yesterday, though, it was the fielding which failed under pressure. Collingwoodadmitted: "The areas where we're off the pace at the moment is our fielding andour catching especially, and that's disappointing," he added.

"We haven't played a hell of a lot of floodlit cricket and it is different.We've come across from England without a lot of preparation with regards toplaying under lights. …

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