Paul Collingwood papers over fragile England batting line-up

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Paul CollingwoodBecause if you’ve got a fragile batting line-up, paper is the greatest disguise. You can conceal all manner of batting sins through judicious use of paper.

England’s batting folded at Old Trafford but they got away with it. It happened at Headingley and they didn’t. Paul Collingwood’s innings of 91 not out off 71 balls was a desperate one from a top one-day player, but he was never going to get England home alone.

England are definitely improving, but you still don’t feel confident when they bat. India’s top four all made fifties. England’s managed 4, 46, 44 and 0, which isn’t really good enough.

We’re still not convinced about Matt Prior as an opener. We don’t think he likes it. He should play, but maybe bat at seven. The question then is who opens?

England want quick runs from their other opener, with Alastair Cook nominally playing the long innings. Perhaps Ravi Bopara might fit the role, although he seems to be developing into the next Paul Collingwood – a canny run-chaser.

A bit of form from Kevin Pietersen would help immensely, of course.

England v India, fifth one-day international at Headingley
India 324-6 (Yuvraj Singh 72, Sachin Tendulkar 71, Sourav Ganguly 59, Gautam Gambhir 51)
England 242-8 (Paul Collingwood 91)
England lost following a Duckworth-Lewis calculation


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


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  1. I reckon that now that they’ve called up Luke Wright, he should probably get a crack.. he’s been flying for Sussex in the short form, and looks a much better bet than Prior.
    The fact that Ravi’s out for the rest of this tournament, and the 20/20, will make that choice a non-starter

    Put Prior back down to 6/7, and all should be good…

  2. Good point. It’s like we always say: There’s no point trying to resolve problems – they always sort themselves out.

    Our non-interventionist philosophy has got us a long way in life…

  3. I wholeheartedly agree!!! Especially seing that our opening partners scored a massive SIX between them..

    Let’s hope Bell and Pieterson can get us to a position where he can come out smashing…

  4. As I type that, Chawla does this…

    16.5 Piyush Chawla to Bell, OUT, he’s bowled him! The wrong’un from Piyush and Bell is completely outfoxed. Down on one knee, he tries to smash him over the top but is beaten by the googly

    I’ll change that to, I hope Pieteson and Collingwood can get us to a position where Wright can come out smashing…


  5. Now its down the KP and Owais! Lose one of them and Wright will come in and be unable to play his natural game!

  6. You pinko commie onion!!!

    You’re a spy, infiltrating the England team, and causing all sorts of shenanigans.

    Damn you ONION.

    So Shah & Wright it is then.

  7. He is having a stormer! Well my views are based on the Guardian OBO. Need some more big hits to make it competitive.

  8. It does appear so!! Shah, seems to be in on the act too!! Top batting.

    If they can keep this up for a few more overs, they’ll have 300 on the board..

    I denounce your pinko commie status, and suggest that you must be a double agent, cunning.

  9. It’s happened again!! Wright, run out. I think I should stop commenting, and be sent to the corner with my dunces cap on.

    Dimi, to come in and smash a quickfire 35!

  10. I think Shah needs a 100 its the only way he wont get beaten by KP when he gets back to the pavillion! id settle with 290+

  11. And so it shall be..

    Although Cricinfo, are saying that he should never have gone for the second, as Shah shouted NO loud enough for it to be heard at Lords…

    But as we can all appreciate, no one tells KP what to do.. He’s on a mission to take on the world.

  12. My word, what’s happened..

    Yuvraj Singh for the last over, Dimi’s smashed him for 30 runs. 5 sixes in a row.. 37 off 15..

    Dravid, may have just cost India the series there..

  13. I wasn’t far wrong, eh…

    Blimey, maybe I should take up gambling, I’m sure to be a millionaire, if I keep picking them like that.

    If I do win a million, I’m buying Robert Key & Matt Walker, and I’ll use them as bean bags. I’ll only let them out so they can play for NMCC 4th XI with me at the weekend.


  14. Suave, I think you’ll have to forget about Matt Walker — the rest of the million will have to go down as the inestimable Mr. Key’s pie budget.

  15. How can you say that Mahinda…

    I can never forget Matty Walker, he is my one true love!

    I shall let King Robert eat Walker’s excess fat, that’ll keep em both happy for ever and a day! Huzzah

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