England look to capitalise on unlikely win
John Dyson may still be wondering how he mis-calculated the Duckworth-Lewis target yesterday, which prompted England's farcial one-run win in the first ODI, but Paul Collingwood is confident that his side's first win of a gruelling winter can inspire them to greater success in the remaining four matches.
Yesterday's game was teetering one way and another, with West Indies needing 27 from 22 balls when the light was offered to the batsmen. They immediately took it and Dyson, animatedly beckoning them back in, was soon at the heart of an embarassing debate over the Duckworth-Lewis target. Unfortunately, he had failed to take into account the wicket immediately preceding the offer of bad light, meaning England sneaked home for a rare and greatly appreciated win from a match that could easily have headed West Indies' way.
"In whatever circumstances, we'll take a win," Collingwood told PA. "As we all know it's been a long, hard winter for us - and we were looking to get that win just to boost the morale a bit. We've put in a lot of hard work and effort, whether that is on the pitch or in training, but we haven't been getting the results sometimes you deserve - and obviously that affects confidence a bit.
"When you win it does boost your morale, and we hope that's the catalyst to bigger and better things. But it's only one game, and we've got a few important games coming up - and tomorrow is now a big game for us."
Collingwood, who earned himself the Man-of-the-Match award after top-scoring for England with 69 and claiming Ramnaresh Sarwan's wicket, was nevertheless sympathetic about West Indies' situation yesterday evening.
"These kind of situations don't come along that often, and I think that was a once-in-a-blue-moon situation - with a wicket going down mid-over - so you can kind of understand the confusion," he said. "To look at a Duckworth/Lewis sheet is quite confusing. I don't know whether there is a better way of doing it to help the management and the players while they are on the pitch, but it doesn't happen that often. All the people that turn up on the day want to see a proper game and want to see it finished in a proper manner, but that is what Duckworth/Lewis is in place for.
"In years gone by, it was farcical - because usually the team who were batting second were always struggling to win the game. Duckworth/Lewis is a good system - it's just that sometimes it's quite hard to read."
Collingwood's composure has been one of the winter's highlights for England, but he struggled initially yesterday with a migraine which later required a painkiller. However, it came about slap in the middle of England's batting Powerplay in which they only managed 17 runs and lost two wickets. In contrast, West Indies carved 52 in theirs - largely thanks to Shivnarine Chanderpaul's barnstorming attack on Steve Harmison who was taken for 26 in one over. Nevertheless, Collingwood is confident England can redress the balance in the second ODI tomorrow.
"They are going to come hard at us - they've obviously got a gameplan to come hard at us up front - but we managed to get (Chris) Gayle pretty early (yesterday)," he said. "They are a good one-day side; we know they have match-winners in their side. I thought the majority of the game the other night we controlled pretty well, but there was an area we should have improved on. We should have got another 20 or 30 runs."