Early wickets key to win: Collingwood

The key to bouncing back against India in the second ODI would be to take early wickets, feels Paul Collingwood.

updated: November 16, 2008 10:31 IST
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The key to bouncing back against India in the second One-Day International on Monday after their huge defeat in the opening encounter at Rajkot would be to take early wickets and put the hosts under pressure, feels England all-rounder Paul Collingwood.

"We just have to stop them. We need to be more aggressive. We want to hit India hard. The key is to take early wickets and put them under pressure," Collingwood told reporters at the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association stadium on Sunday.

"India is very much like any other team. We did not get into a situation from where we could get on top of them. Hopefully we can do it tomorrow," he said.

The visiting team's lower middle order batsman claimed that despite the setbacks for the team in the Stanford Super Series in Antigua and the first ODI at Rajkot, the team was high on confidence.

"Ours in a close-knit team. The morale is very high. We will definitely bounce back (in the series)," he said ahead of the second match.

The good news for the visiting team is the return to fitness of their left arm swing bowler Ryan Sidebottom who gives their attack variety that it lacked at Rajkot.

"Ryan is fully fit to play," Collingwood said.

He said if Yuvraj Singh, who demolished the England attack at Rajkot with a blazing 138 not out, is not available for Monday's tie, it would be an advantage for the tourists.

"It was one of the best innings in One-Day Internationals. He has scored heavily against us in the Twenty20 World Championship at Durban. If he's not able to play tomorrow, obviously it would be bonus for us," he said.

The Indian camp is still not sure whether the Punjab batsman would be fit to play tomorrow and has decided to take a final call before the match.

Collingwood said that the toss could be vital as the wicket looked flat, the boundaries short and the ground small, indicating that the best option would be to bat first.

"It looks to be pretty flat with some cracks. The ground is small and the boundaries are short. Batting first on this wicket would be the way to go," said Collingwood.

England skipper Kevin Pietersen had won the toss at Rajkot and put India in to bat and saw his bowling attack plundered by India who scored a massive 387 for five, their second-best ODI score ever.

Collingwood echoed his captain and Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni's views that the new Power Play rule -- which gives a chance to the batting team to avail it once -- is interesting.

"It has given the captains a few more headaches in choosing your moment to take it. It's done between the 30s and early 40s (overs). It has certainly made it (ODIs) a lot more interesting," he declared.

Asked about England players' participation in the Indian Premier League's second season, Collingwood said he would love to take part in it but his priority was to play for his country.

"I would love to play in the IPL which is huge if a clear window is open. For me wearing the England shirt is most important. It's also the other players' point of view. It's up to the ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) and the BCCI (Indian Cricket Board) to sort out," he said.