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Last Updated: Tuesday, 13 February 2007, 14:41 GMT
Paul Collingwood column

P Collingwood
By Paul Collingwood
England batsman

It's good to be back home. I managed nine hours sleep on the second leg of the flight back from Sydney so hopefully I'll be jet-lag free.

We had a fairly big night of celebration in Australia after winning the Commonwealth Bank Series, so on the plane it was a bit quiet.

Adelaide
The loss on the last day of the Adelaide Test hit England hard

Everybody was absolutely knackered - that's really when the exhaustion hit us. I think we all slept pretty well.

Now that it's all over, I can finally reflect on the tour as a whole.

It will be analysed by other people over the next few weeks, but the last day in the Adelaide Test was probably the turning-point as far as the Ashes series was concerned.

In Brisbane, we had been outplayed but at the Adelaide Oval we were in such a strong position that to lose the game was a killer.

A lot of sport is played in the mind and it can really hurt you when you lose a match like that.

It can dent the confidence and scar you. The defeat proved to be a really big body blow which was hard to recover from.

There were one or two good individual performances after that, but as a team we never really bounced back from that defeat.

You have to give a lot of credit to Australia, but we are confident we can play well in Test cricket in the summer.

All the boys will be looking forward to playing Australia again in two years time.

After the Tests, it took us a long time to get going in the one-dayers.

But even when we were in our trough and confidence was low, I said at the time that it only takes one performance to turn things around and that's exactly what happened.

Ed Joyce's century at Sydney put a lot of belief back in the side.

Paul Collingwood and Andrew Flintoff
Relaxing in the dressing-room with the skipper after the final win

We posted a good total there and put the Aussies back under pressure, which we hadn't done for some time.

The victory gave us confidence to go out and express ourselves and that's what we did from then on.

Personally, I went from my double century in the Adelaide Test, through weeks of low scores in Tests and one-dayers, then finished with two centuries and a 70.

It was quite a transformation!

I might have got emotionally affected by the Test matches for a while or maybe I over-analysed my own batting,

But finally, in Brisbane against New Zealand, I managed to hit a few balls and once I got to 40 I felt confident again.

You go from feeling every ball is going to get you out to a feeling that you can hit most balls for four. It's amazing how the mentality can change within one innings.

All I want now is to be able to continue this rich vein of form. It would be great if I can peak at the right time for the World Cup

Other players are coming good at the right time too, notably my Durham team-mate Liam Plunkett.

He has a lot of talent and what a great time for him to be getting key wickets. By swinging the ball at good pace he's a massive threat.

How far can we go in the World Cup?

Well, when you have beaten Australia three times in a row, and in between knocked over New Zealand who are a class outfit themselves, you have to feel confident.

You never know, we could go all the way. But it's early days yet.



SEE ALSO
Collingwood backed for Cup glory
13 Feb 07 |  Cricket
England - Players to watch
14 Feb 07 |  England
England hero delighted with form
09 Feb 07 |  England


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