Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Collingwood Learns the Brutal Truth as Hosts Get Merciless Thrashing; after Seeing His Team Outclassed by the Visitors, England Skipper Knows That There Is a Lot of Work to Be Done. by James Masters

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Collingwood Learns the Brutal Truth as Hosts Get Merciless Thrashing; after Seeing His Team Outclassed by the Visitors, England Skipper Knows That There Is a Lot of Work to Be Done. by James Masters

Article excerpt

Byline: James Masters

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ENGLAND FIXTURES

Sunday: England v India (5.30pm, Lord's) Monday: England v West Indies (1.30pm, Brit Oval)

PAUL COLLINGWOOD revealed only last week how he had rediscovered his love for the England captaincy following his side's exploits against Pakistan.

The impressive nature of England's 48-run victory at the Oval last weekend gave rise to the hope that the host nation could finally compete at the top table.

That feeling, however, may have subsided somewhat after Collingwood's side were brutally beaten by a South Africa team seemingly destined to lift the World Twenty20 trophy.

Where Andorra's footballers had looked so out of their depth at Wembley less than 24 hours earlier, it was England's cricketers who looked out of place at a sundrenched Trent Bridge.

While the defeat by the Netherlands brought both embarrassment and humiliation, this latest setback is far more damaging for Collingwood's men, for this was no fluke but a merciless thrashing.

Not only were England thoroughly outclassed by their opponents, they were also left in no doubt as to how far they have fallen behind the leading nations following this seven-wicket defeat.

Having limped to paltry 111 with one ball of their 20 overs to spare, England were forced to defend their lowest ever score in this form of the game.

Jacques Kallis's unbeaten 57 from 49 balls condemned the hosts to defeat and left Collingwood lamenting his side's dreadful batting performance.

"South Africa proved why they are going to be favourites in the competition,'' said the England skipper.

"They set the standards with their fielding and their bowling and put us under a lot of pressure. A good total on that wicket was probably going to be 150, but we lost early wickets and we were always behind the eight-ball. You were only going to defend 111, one in 10 times.

"Their team covers all bases. They fling themselves around in the field and are very quick. There are not many areas that you can really target.'' On an evening which promised so much, only Owais Shas managed to deliver with the bat. …

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