If you’re Paul Collingwood, you have to do a little bit more than other batsmen. He’s hit three hundreds in his last nine Test innings, each in a different country and each against a different attack. People will accept that he can stay in the side for another couple of matches now.
Maybe it’s because he looks ill-acquainted with a cricket bat. It doesn’t move right in his hands. You imagine him opening his kitbag on the first morning of a Test. He looks down at the chunk of willow within and says: ‘What the hell is that?’
We like him that way. We like his awkward punching strokeplay. We like the nurdle, we like the chop and we like the hoist. Every time people say Paul Collingwood has to go because he’s not good enough, he comes back and scores some hundreds and really, that’s all that matters.