Australia v England, 5th Test, Sydney, 4th day January 6, 2011

'The perfect moment for me to go' - Collingwood

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Paul Collingwood believes he has chosen the perfect moment to end his Test career, as England close in on an unprecedented third innings victory of their tour of Australia, a result that will go a long way towards erasing the bitter memories of the 5-0 whitewash of four years ago, and bring Collingwood's own career full circle after the role he played on his home Test debut at The Oval in 2005, in the game that ended Australia's two-decade-long dominance of the Ashes.

Speaking on the day he made his impending retirement public, Collingwood described his feat of playing 68 Tests as an "over-achievement", and modestly stated that England's ambition of becoming the No. 1 team in the world will be that much more attainable without him blocking up an end in the manner that he has made his trademark in the course of the past five years.

"In many ways it's a sad moment, but I honestly think it's the right time, and in many ways it's the perfect moment," said Collingwood. "This is what I've been playing the game of cricket for, to be in a position against Australia in Australia like this. I know I haven't contributed with the bat in this series, but I'm a very, very happy man."

At the age of 34, Collingwood knew he was on borrowed time at Test level. His last meaningful innings was against Pakistan at Trent Bridge in July when he made 82 alongside Eoin Morgan, the man most likely to take his place in the middle order. Since then, his returns have been disappointing, with 83 runs in the whole Ashes campaign including a final, frenetic innings of 13 on the third day at Sydney.

However, the desire to make amends for the whitewash four years ago, when his career-best 206 at Adelaide was not enough to stop the Australian juggernaut, made him determined to extend himself for one last series.

"This series has been a special series for me," he said. "I think 2005, playing at The Oval, was a special game, and a special moment, but although I haven't scored the runs out here I can barely take the smile off my face. It's been something that I've been waiting for, for a long time. The last time we were here four years ago, I actually managed to score runs and we got beat 5-0. This time I much prefer it this way around, let me tell you!"

Collingwood's fighting qualities have earned him plenty admirers in the course of his Test career, even though he has been written off at the highest level almost as often as he has battled back to produce a career- or match-saving innings. Right at this moment, however, Collingwood believes that the same qualities that helped hold the side together in the difficult years that followed the 2005 triumph are holding them back right now, as their stated goal of becoming the world's No. 1 Test team draws ever closer.

"That's one of the reasons why I'm moving on, to be honest!" he said. "Honestly, this team can go as far as they want to. As you can see from this series, our batting has gone from strength to strength. They can take a lot of confidence from the way they've played out here, but they can still progress and they are very eager to improve all the time. The work ethic that they have is fantastic, and that's one of the things I'll miss, but I'm very much looking forward to watch them in the future. They can be a very special side."

"Obviously my form hasn't helped, but I'm very realistic," he added. "At the same time there are some great young players coming though, but if I wanted to progress and stay in this England cricket team, I was going to have to work very hard on technical things, and whether I've got the time and the ability to stay up with this England cricket team, I'm not too sure.

"I'm very, very satisfied with the contributions over my Test career," he said. "It mustn't be easy to watch for some people at times, but I've fought hard, given my all, and as I said, this is the perfect moment. I've played the last year just to get into this series, and to be involved in a great England cricket team like it is at the moment, with some special players and some special characters, it's a very proud place to be. I can safely say I've made the right decision at the right time."

"A lot of people might find it difficult to believe I'd stay in the team that long. It's taken a lot of effort, in many ways I've over-achieved, averaging 40. In many ways I've scrapped it out. I've had my ups and downs but I wouldn't change a thing about how my career has been. Some of the players I've played with in that England dressing room have been exceptional, and I can safely say that the environment we've got in that dressing room is a very special place. That's why it's hard to leave, but it's definitely the right time."

Collingwood has long had a reputation for putting the team first, and his delight at toppling the Australians was unmistakable, and not remotely dented by his personal shortcomings with the bat. In his opinion, it is the culmination of a mission that began on his first tour of the country in 2002-03, when the challenge was to transform England's expectations against opponents that at times seemed invincible.

"This is what we were trying to build towards," he said. "At the time there wasn't the belief we could beat Australia, and it was a culture that we had to turn around. It didn't work last time around, but I honestly believe we have skilful cricketers in England, and we've got a culture that believes we can beat anyone in the world.

"I think that part of the game, the mental side, the belief, is a huge part, and creating a culture like that in the dressing room is more important than a lot of the technical work you do in the nets. These guys have worked long and hard for that, but they can get better as well, and go from strength to strength."

Matt Prior, who scored his first Ashes century on the fourth day at Sydney, said that Collingwood would be greatly missed within the England dressing room. "The part of a cricketer you don't see is the part away from the cricket ground," he said. "Everyone will know the stats and the important innings he's played, the great catches he's taken and the wickets he's taken. But it's what a bloke like Colly brings to the dressing room, he's definitely been one of the catalysts of why this team is where it is right now, and why the team spirit is like it is."

Collingwood admitted his motivation for making his announcement mid-Test was to scotch the whispers that had already begun to circulate, and also because he secretly believed that England might have won with a day to spare. And while he said that he had not intended to make a fuss about his departure, he admitted to feeling goosebumps in the final half-hour of the day, when England were pushing for victory with the Barmy Army in full cry.

"I'm a softie really, to be honest," he said. "I always said I wanted to bow out in England in front of English fans, but that felt like home tonight, with the atmosphere that was out there. It was very special. Someone said to me yesterday, I might not be too bothered about a massive swansong, but a lot of fans might be. When you look around the ground, you deserve to have those lasting memories."

Andrew Miller is UK editor of Cricinfo.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • appreciator on January 7, 2011, 11:43 GMT

    A perfect swansong. His touch with the bat deserted him, but he still contributed. And now, as so often in his career, he puts the team's success ahead of his own. There are many cricketers -- and other sports-people outside cricket -- who could learn a lot from this man.

  • itssudeep on January 7, 2011, 7:00 GMT

    Paul Collingwood exemplified the true English bulldog spirit to me. To all those who think he was just an ordinary batsman, consider that his average of 40+ came batting mostly at nos. 5 & 6, in quite an average team. And to put that in perspective, that's just 3 short of Strauss' average. Will miss your never-say-die spirit Colly. And this is coming from an Indian.

  • STondulkar on January 7, 2011, 6:37 GMT

    Great fighter. Collingwood for England was Steve Waugh for Australia.

  • on January 7, 2011, 6:30 GMT

    Oh what a great human being... It is not everyday that the player by himself says he'lll go out after a poor series..and you are not talking about a really poor series - he won them matches with his amazing fielding, and got some crucial wickets... don't forget he scored almost as much as the opposing captain and wise-captain! So it takes great dedication and patriotism.. I can't really say what but he's great!! I Salute you and wish you great things to come .. I won't forget the flick for six off zaheer khan that he hit in the natwest series - effortless and oozing class (I really don't know why he underplays his own batting)

  • tikna on January 7, 2011, 6:04 GMT

    He couldnt have picked a better moment, leaving on a team high and with an able replacement in Eoin Morgan.

    Good Bye Colly and well done in the tests.

  • Y2SJ on January 7, 2011, 4:51 GMT

    Thanks for thos wonderful innings. Hope he helps England perform well in ODIs too.

  • smartha_hk on January 7, 2011, 3:02 GMT

    Collingwood chose the right time to quit. He has contributed to England team immensely. There was always a sense of confidence when he was around batting. He could change the course of the game through his sheer grit and determination. The moment he realized his performance in Test team is fading, he has retired before people start asking questions about his presence. Well done Colly. You have been a real gentleman. While people miss you in the Test arena, we all look forward to seeing you in other versions of the game. I am an avid fan of Rahul Dravid and immensely support his presence in the Indian team. But there is a a lesson or two to learn from Colly for guys like Dravid and also to Ponting. I am not in any way offending these two's contribution to their respective teams. I have lot of respect for Dravid and Ponting. Like someone said - "Quit while they ask 'Why?', not when they start asking 'Why not?' ".

  • Sam-The-Fan on January 7, 2011, 2:19 GMT

    Sad to see a good player quit. He has been a real gentleman and great ambassador of cricket. Wish you all the best Colly.

  • _NEUTRAL_Fan_ on January 7, 2011, 2:14 GMT

    good team player and great fielder.

  • on January 7, 2011, 1:36 GMT

    He did a good job for the Delhi Daredevils in last year's IPL. i enjoyed watching him play. Sad to see him go; best of luck to him playing limited overs cricket.

  • appreciator on January 7, 2011, 11:43 GMT

    A perfect swansong. His touch with the bat deserted him, but he still contributed. And now, as so often in his career, he puts the team's success ahead of his own. There are many cricketers -- and other sports-people outside cricket -- who could learn a lot from this man.

  • itssudeep on January 7, 2011, 7:00 GMT

    Paul Collingwood exemplified the true English bulldog spirit to me. To all those who think he was just an ordinary batsman, consider that his average of 40+ came batting mostly at nos. 5 & 6, in quite an average team. And to put that in perspective, that's just 3 short of Strauss' average. Will miss your never-say-die spirit Colly. And this is coming from an Indian.

  • STondulkar on January 7, 2011, 6:37 GMT

    Great fighter. Collingwood for England was Steve Waugh for Australia.

  • on January 7, 2011, 6:30 GMT

    Oh what a great human being... It is not everyday that the player by himself says he'lll go out after a poor series..and you are not talking about a really poor series - he won them matches with his amazing fielding, and got some crucial wickets... don't forget he scored almost as much as the opposing captain and wise-captain! So it takes great dedication and patriotism.. I can't really say what but he's great!! I Salute you and wish you great things to come .. I won't forget the flick for six off zaheer khan that he hit in the natwest series - effortless and oozing class (I really don't know why he underplays his own batting)

  • tikna on January 7, 2011, 6:04 GMT

    He couldnt have picked a better moment, leaving on a team high and with an able replacement in Eoin Morgan.

    Good Bye Colly and well done in the tests.

  • Y2SJ on January 7, 2011, 4:51 GMT

    Thanks for thos wonderful innings. Hope he helps England perform well in ODIs too.

  • smartha_hk on January 7, 2011, 3:02 GMT

    Collingwood chose the right time to quit. He has contributed to England team immensely. There was always a sense of confidence when he was around batting. He could change the course of the game through his sheer grit and determination. The moment he realized his performance in Test team is fading, he has retired before people start asking questions about his presence. Well done Colly. You have been a real gentleman. While people miss you in the Test arena, we all look forward to seeing you in other versions of the game. I am an avid fan of Rahul Dravid and immensely support his presence in the Indian team. But there is a a lesson or two to learn from Colly for guys like Dravid and also to Ponting. I am not in any way offending these two's contribution to their respective teams. I have lot of respect for Dravid and Ponting. Like someone said - "Quit while they ask 'Why?', not when they start asking 'Why not?' ".

  • Sam-The-Fan on January 7, 2011, 2:19 GMT

    Sad to see a good player quit. He has been a real gentleman and great ambassador of cricket. Wish you all the best Colly.

  • _NEUTRAL_Fan_ on January 7, 2011, 2:14 GMT

    good team player and great fielder.

  • on January 7, 2011, 1:36 GMT

    He did a good job for the Delhi Daredevils in last year's IPL. i enjoyed watching him play. Sad to see him go; best of luck to him playing limited overs cricket.

  • Anneeq on January 7, 2011, 1:13 GMT

    Very good servant to English and world cricket, although he didnt have the best of exits with respect to being in good batting form he's been a fine player for England and can hold his head high. One of the best fielders in the world and a decent bowler. Ul be missed :)

  • on January 7, 2011, 1:09 GMT

    Collingwood equals battler equals true team player - wonder what kind of speaker he is because if he was giving motivational speeches I would listen!

  • pawlett on January 6, 2011, 23:02 GMT

    I have always been a great admirer of Colly's fighting spirit and rate him with the great Ken Barrington as an ideal man for a batting crisis

  • on January 6, 2011, 22:41 GMT

    I will miss his back foot sixes of a pull and hook :) hopping to see in ODIs and T20. Great man with much dedications then any one. Hats off.

  • Iceborn999 on January 6, 2011, 21:48 GMT

    As an Aussie fan, I can only say what a thorn Colly was. In years gone by when England were 5 for not much, you knew colly would make a game out of it. As one of the pivotal members who brought England cricket back, he deserves the utmost respect . His fighting abilities were reminiscent of the great Steve Waugh. Cheers for the memories mate.

  • whoster on January 6, 2011, 21:39 GMT

    Just want to add my best wishes to Colly. He personifies the humble, working class foot soldier. Always gave everything for the team, and apart his very decent batting career, is a brilliant fielder, useful bowler, and wonderful influence on the players around him. Shame he had a disappointing last series with the bat, but it's been said that Colly only scores runs when it matters, well, when England score over 500 in an innings four times in a series - his runs weren't exactly imperative! Besides, how many superb catches has he taken this series - especially the amazing one handed effort at slip to get rid of Ponting in Perth? He's chosen the perfect time to bow out, and though the stats won't say it, has played his part in retaining the Ashes. Good on you Colly, England is very proud of you and the rest of the boys!

  • prikand on January 6, 2011, 20:50 GMT

    Well done Colly.You are a gentleman.Thanks for all the entertainment.You set a good example of leaving high rather than waiting to be kicked off.

  • on January 6, 2011, 20:34 GMT

    Paul Collingwods 206 in the Adelade test on the last tour was one of the best innings I have seen on live TV.The moment he brought up his 200 with a four over mid off with the massed ranks of the Barmy Army in the background was a great moment and something that will live long in my memory.

  • stationmaster on January 6, 2011, 19:56 GMT

    A true gentleman. Even in his last hour, his consideration is the team. He personifies teamwork and team ethics. Well done Colly on being a great cricketer and a great bloke.

  • le_stephenois on January 6, 2011, 19:50 GMT

    good bye Colly. One of the best team players and fielder I've ever seen, no great talent but his dedication has always been exemplary, also part of that rarest of specimen, an honest cricketer. wishes from Skardu, Gilgit-Baltistan.

  • on January 6, 2011, 19:09 GMT

    Paul had a good 2-3 yrs of cricket left in him. All he had to do was to step back and rediscover his form. Many people do that. I don't think there is anything wrong in getting dropped - it makes the comeback even better. He is definitely not the greatest batsman, but neither is he a pushover. Avg of 40 is pretty good with 10 centuries..Mike Artherton had an average of 37 and we all have the impression of being a great fighting batsman.

  • mrklinkerpants on January 6, 2011, 19:02 GMT

    Sad to see him go - a top bloke, great professional and someone who has seriously downplayed his own contribution to the turnaround in the England teams fortunes in the past few years. Anyone who averages over 40 in Test cricket deserves to be classed as a quality player. The fact that he has achieved this through sheer hard work and professionalism boosting a workmanlike technique above and beyond what it should have achieved just shows the guys determination and fighting spirit. Throw in the fact that he is probably still, at 34, one of the best fielders in the world and a more than useful bowler shows what this England team will miss.

    Good on him - if only KP could keep his trap shut for long enough to look at someone like Collingwood who has let their cricket do the talking for years. England would really have someone truly world-class batting at no.4 if that ever happened. Don't hold your breath though.

  • on January 6, 2011, 18:59 GMT

    he is the perfect "crisis-man"...always performed when england needed it the most...hats-off to this great allrounder...will definitely be counted among the greats of modern cricket...his big fans like me will miss him a lot in the Tests, TG we will get to see him in the limited over games...All the best Colly...

  • on January 6, 2011, 18:14 GMT

    Didn't score many runs this series cos he didn't need to.

  • MisterE84 on January 6, 2011, 18:10 GMT

    Great article here and shows what a fantastic attitude that Collingwood has. Unfortunately he is one of those guys who played his best around a poor side - but at least in this series he'll get to enjoy the fruits of his earlier labour in helping to create what looks like a top cricket side.

    Love the attitude and the 'team comes first' methodology - and being an Aussie I would e-mail this article to Ponting, Katich, Hussey for them to read over and remember that the team always comes before the individual. Not saying that any/all of these should retire, just see the kind of attitude he has.

    Also England will be good in the next 3 years, Australia won't be - so its not as if our older players now are likely to be missing any great successful periods by playing on for another year or two - while Collingwood may well miss a golden period of English cricket.

    I watched his 206 in Adelaide and respected his fighting qualties. Want to be a batting coach for Australia, Colly? Hired

  • danishsyed88 on January 6, 2011, 18:06 GMT

    One of my favourite players. He will be remembered

  • SibaMohanty on January 6, 2011, 17:56 GMT

    The perfect English gentleman...So long, Colly. Will miss you....

  • on January 6, 2011, 17:47 GMT

    colly was never a classy/ fluent test player , he would always get the odd 50 or 100 at just the right time to avoid the eye of the sceptics...he will be remembered for the catch he took to dismiss Hayden in the 2005 one day series in england!!!

  • on January 6, 2011, 17:23 GMT

    True gentleman of gentleman's game. One of my favorites. We always remember you foever. ALL THE BEST COLLY... (by the way i m from Sri lanka you have supporters all around the world)

  • on January 6, 2011, 17:16 GMT

    We miss u colly for ur fighting spirit, superb fielding and work ethics. ALL THE BEST FOR UR FUTURE

  • on January 6, 2011, 16:54 GMT

    Thanks for the memories, Colly and the memories which are to come in one-day cricket. Wholehearted in everything you do, simply the best fielder we have had for years and a true Northern gentleman. A true 100%er in every respect. Durham will be all the stronger for your retirement. As near a Yorkshireman as it's possible to get! I can think of no better accolade. Enjoy your retirement, but don't desert the T20 World Champions just yet, please.

  • Podarite on January 6, 2011, 16:49 GMT

    He definitely deserves those Lasting Memories....A True Fighter & a Brilliant Slip-Catcher,who always put his team above self....We will miss u,colly!

  • bumbles11 on January 6, 2011, 16:49 GMT

    He will do will in ODI and 20/20 sides and play longer in the IPL and county cricket....good time to go. His gritty type of player was needed by England in Tests but not any longer.

  • on January 6, 2011, 16:40 GMT

    A great player who will be missed but how good to see some one who puts the team first rather than his own personal ambitions.A lesson for Rick Ponting to consider.

  • george204 on January 6, 2011, 16:30 GMT

    All these clich├ęs about numbers not doing Paul Collingwood justice don't do justice to Paul Collingwood's numbers! He averaged over 40 which is more than Messrs Atherton, Stewart, Hussain, Lamb & Gatting (to name a few). It's also more than Graham Gooch did after 68 tests.

    He also scored 10 centuries. That's equal 27th on the all-time England list, ahead of some very good names (e.g. Ted Dexter, Patsy Hendren).

    Colly's career wasn't just a case of a good guy getting making the most of limited talent, he delivered where it mattered too: in the scorebook.

  • on January 6, 2011, 16:01 GMT

    good decision - cheers to Collingwood .. Intelligent humble persons knows when to quit ... Which Pointing doesn't know ..

  • swervin on January 6, 2011, 15:59 GMT

    great player...actually england may miss him in the field if not with the bat

  • Divinetouch on January 6, 2011, 15:59 GMT

    Beast wishes on your retirement from test cricket. Good you went without being pushed.

  • cricket_fan_1 on January 6, 2011, 15:44 GMT

    Great Colly, a true Team player. Jayasurya should stop causing headache to SL selectors and call it a day and think of his team and country before his own ambitions to play in another WC. Pointing should learn from Colly and bid farewell after WC. Even Dravid has passed his prime and give retirement a serious thought after the current SA series.

  • cricPassion2009 on January 6, 2011, 15:44 GMT

    Amazing player, amazing timing of retirement. Good luck Colly and thanks for your cricketing contributions.

  • Johnny_129 on January 6, 2011, 15:28 GMT

    Great player and even a greater gentleman - cricket could do with more personalities like Colly! Best of luck.

  • landl47 on January 6, 2011, 15:24 GMT

    Great guy. His contribution to the side has been more than just runs, wickets and catches; you can see from what he says here that it's the team spirit which has benefitted most of all from his presence. I doubt England could have got to where they are now without him.

  • on January 6, 2011, 15:20 GMT

    collingwood has two sides to him. His side one: ability to bat england out of the most precarious predicaments with some ugly and stubborn batting in test matches. Side two: ability to play some absolutely awesome pull shots in odi and t20 matches. Truly an underrated player who can adapt to playing in any situation.

  • Bowks on January 6, 2011, 14:53 GMT

    Congratulations Paul on a great career.

    However, you can't help but think he's timed his retirement just about right before the axe fell on him. The gushing that is in this and other articles is a little difficult to stomach for someone who was a pretty run of the mill test match cricketer, neither a fantastically gifted batsman or game changing bowler. It becomes even harder to stomach when all forms of media are now calling time on Ricky Ponting's career before he has had time to consider his own options. Surely one of the greatest batsmen of his generation, and possibly ever (debateable), deserves better from Cricinfo and the wider media. And before anyone jumps all over me, I'm not an Aussie, I'm English.

  • ulhas.ravi on January 6, 2011, 14:27 GMT

    Paul Collingwood what a player... Team performer... Hats Off to you!

  • Truemans_Ghost on January 6, 2011, 14:18 GMT

    It is a measure of the man that in these comments, where generally hardly a kind word is said, there has hardly been a ill word said. My favourite cricketer.

  • Allan716 on January 6, 2011, 14:15 GMT

    Colly has a hidden message there for Ponting too! Maybe Punter should break tradition and give up on captaincy to prolong his career. Pup though is not the leader for the future. My leader would be Craig White!

  • danmcb on January 6, 2011, 14:12 GMT

    Hey Mr PC, maybe you didn't find many runs this time, but you were exceptional (as always) in the field, and you did bowl out Mike Hussey at a key moment! Gonna miss you in the side, but what a total mark of class it is to bow out now. Total respect for who you are and what you have done. All the best.

  • Stephen_P on January 6, 2011, 14:07 GMT

    It's a mark of how far England have come that some people feel able to disparage the contributions of a man who averaged over 40 throughout his test career, was more than useful as a bowler in all forms of the game, and was peerless in the field. It's a shame that he can't retire while in better form - no-one with such a career deserves to go out of test cricket with that last miscued shot - but at least he still has the one-day formats in which to shine before he fully leaves the international stage.

    As a personable, knowledgable student of the game, Collingwood's future within the game remains bright, whether as a coach or a pundit. All the best with your future endeavours, Paul.

  • on January 6, 2011, 13:37 GMT

    He is an example and inspiration to many. What's notable is that he did not block a youngsters place!

  • sweetspot on January 6, 2011, 13:33 GMT

    COLLY!!! Don't you sneak out of the ODIs like this! No worries about Tests - you've done your bit, but the ODIs really need you. Also, when England get thrashed by India, we don't want to see you on the losing side!

  • ActionCJ on January 6, 2011, 13:31 GMT

    Paul Collingwood, living legend. If I choose a team with 11 Collingwood then I knew I would have a team that would work 100% on and off the field. 40 personal average however he has brought the teams total score up and kept the opposition's lower and this has been what has made the man. This is why he would be in my International Team of the year. Paul Collingwood take a bow!

  • Gizza on January 6, 2011, 13:17 GMT

    Collingwood has no ego at all. The team prospers with people like him. He is so unlike many Australian, Indian and Sri Lankan players hogging up a spot to the detriment of their country.

  • kdcricket on January 6, 2011, 13:10 GMT

    Colly is a good all round cricketer, who could raise his game when required. However, as he himself has pointed, its time for the younger guys to take over(circle of life!)...glad that he has decided to go out in his terms and with his head held high. Unlike some of the Aussies he did not wait to be shoved out. Will miss your infectious energy mate, all the best for your future in ODI and T20

  • Sulaimaan91 on January 6, 2011, 12:44 GMT

    Good example for players like Jayasuriya, when you feel you cannot contribute to the teams cause, retire.I hope that old fool takes heed and retires for the good of sri lankan cricket

  • 5wombats on January 6, 2011, 12:43 GMT

    What a Top Guy. Absolutely brilliant Colly.

  • on January 6, 2011, 12:38 GMT

    It's really good that Collingwood himself admits that his form is on the wane and it's the time to give chance to younger blood like Eoin Morgan. Nice to see his humility. Collingwood, as far as I know is a real fighter, a brilliant fielder right from the days When Hussain was Captaning English side. He has played some memorable knocks specially in ODIS. He also managed to restrict the fall of English Wickets manytimes the England Batting didn't used to be as good as it is now. Wishing him best luck for future.

  • on January 6, 2011, 12:31 GMT

    Colly you're a star. Your replacement, whoever it is, may just about manage to match your contribution in terms of runs, but what about the role as 5th bowler and England's best fielder?

  • on January 6, 2011, 12:24 GMT

    one of the players I really admired! well done Colly! Hope to see u more in the shorter forms of the game!

  • butterBum on January 6, 2011, 12:05 GMT

    leave in your own terms and have a fond memory of winning a ashes series in Australia. colly you are one lucky no gifted nonononono .....Blessed yes truly blessed English cricketer!.stay healthy and fit " WORLD CUP" is there to grab.

  • Dronaa on January 6, 2011, 12:02 GMT

    I will always remmeber Collingwood as the person who gave his best more than 100% to the side. The first time I watched him play was not so pleasing, because he managed to upstage Sachin Tendulkar in an ODI in India. India were going great guns till he popped in and just pulled the carpet from under the Indian teams feet. It didnt help either that he had scored 70 odd while batting as well. England won the match. Since then Paul Collingwood has always been my personal favorite for his athelticism, doughty batting, ability to dig in deep when the team needed him, but most importantly for putting the team before himself every time. It wasnt how much he scored, personal landmarks mattered little if it did not help the team cause. In a way I saw a bit of Dravid a bit of Tendulkar a bit of Kumble in this modest cricketer. another innings of his, the century against South Africa , the way he went about it. Just one word for Colling wood - Exceptional , in all respects. We will miss you Sir

  • on January 6, 2011, 11:44 GMT

    Well done Paul. Best of luck in the future.

  • on January 6, 2011, 11:31 GMT

    Paul Collingwood has always been a team player. His runs have been valuable and he's dug England out of tough situations. Everyone will remember his double hundred at Adelaide in 2006, a knock that really didn't deserve to be in a losing cause, and his runs at Cardiff as England saved the Test Match in 2009, and as always he'll be remembered by his amazing fielding and catching. It's good that he's continuing with ODI and T20 Cricket, but it'll be interesting to see who the England selectors go for as his replacement. Though Morgan seems natural, they'll be a bowler light in that respect.

  • AvinashChandra on January 6, 2011, 11:31 GMT

    Hats off Collingwood. You have been at the top for me, ever. All the very best to you.

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  • AvinashChandra on January 6, 2011, 11:31 GMT

    Hats off Collingwood. You have been at the top for me, ever. All the very best to you.

  • on January 6, 2011, 11:31 GMT

    Paul Collingwood has always been a team player. His runs have been valuable and he's dug England out of tough situations. Everyone will remember his double hundred at Adelaide in 2006, a knock that really didn't deserve to be in a losing cause, and his runs at Cardiff as England saved the Test Match in 2009, and as always he'll be remembered by his amazing fielding and catching. It's good that he's continuing with ODI and T20 Cricket, but it'll be interesting to see who the England selectors go for as his replacement. Though Morgan seems natural, they'll be a bowler light in that respect.

  • on January 6, 2011, 11:44 GMT

    Well done Paul. Best of luck in the future.

  • Dronaa on January 6, 2011, 12:02 GMT

    I will always remmeber Collingwood as the person who gave his best more than 100% to the side. The first time I watched him play was not so pleasing, because he managed to upstage Sachin Tendulkar in an ODI in India. India were going great guns till he popped in and just pulled the carpet from under the Indian teams feet. It didnt help either that he had scored 70 odd while batting as well. England won the match. Since then Paul Collingwood has always been my personal favorite for his athelticism, doughty batting, ability to dig in deep when the team needed him, but most importantly for putting the team before himself every time. It wasnt how much he scored, personal landmarks mattered little if it did not help the team cause. In a way I saw a bit of Dravid a bit of Tendulkar a bit of Kumble in this modest cricketer. another innings of his, the century against South Africa , the way he went about it. Just one word for Colling wood - Exceptional , in all respects. We will miss you Sir

  • butterBum on January 6, 2011, 12:05 GMT

    leave in your own terms and have a fond memory of winning a ashes series in Australia. colly you are one lucky no gifted nonononono .....Blessed yes truly blessed English cricketer!.stay healthy and fit " WORLD CUP" is there to grab.

  • on January 6, 2011, 12:24 GMT

    one of the players I really admired! well done Colly! Hope to see u more in the shorter forms of the game!

  • on January 6, 2011, 12:31 GMT

    Colly you're a star. Your replacement, whoever it is, may just about manage to match your contribution in terms of runs, but what about the role as 5th bowler and England's best fielder?

  • on January 6, 2011, 12:38 GMT

    It's really good that Collingwood himself admits that his form is on the wane and it's the time to give chance to younger blood like Eoin Morgan. Nice to see his humility. Collingwood, as far as I know is a real fighter, a brilliant fielder right from the days When Hussain was Captaning English side. He has played some memorable knocks specially in ODIS. He also managed to restrict the fall of English Wickets manytimes the England Batting didn't used to be as good as it is now. Wishing him best luck for future.

  • 5wombats on January 6, 2011, 12:43 GMT

    What a Top Guy. Absolutely brilliant Colly.

  • Sulaimaan91 on January 6, 2011, 12:44 GMT

    Good example for players like Jayasuriya, when you feel you cannot contribute to the teams cause, retire.I hope that old fool takes heed and retires for the good of sri lankan cricket