England confident and raring to retain Ashes against Australia: Collingwood

Sunday, November 21, 2010

SYDNEY - England middle-order batsman Paul Collingwood insists that his team is prepared in the best possible way to retain the Ashes against Australia during the upcoming series.

England will defend the urn they claimed with a 2-1 success on home soil last year.

The Andrew Strauss-led team has started their campaign in Australia with wins against Western Australia and Australia ‘A’, and a draw against South Australia.

“Winning two games gives us confidence and belief, but there’s been some huge individual performances as well. The guys are very confident going into Thursday, that’s when the real stuff begins,” the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Collingwood, as saying.

“This is the ultimate, the biggest kind of challenge that you can have as a cricketer, that’s why we’re so excited. We’ve been waiting a long time. To get the opportunity as a player is a great feeling. We have the belief and we are playing some very good cricket,” he added.

The 34-year-old is further confident that England can carry their form in to next week’s first Test in Brisbane.

“There’s genuine belief in the side that we can do it. We’ll keep working hard in the nets and physically. We are confident and raring to go. It’s time now to focus on Australia and individual players and our plans and how the wicket’s going to play,” Collingwood said.

“Our practice and preparation period is not over, we have to prepare up in Brisbane, but we are still very much focused on what we need to do,” he added. (ANI)

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