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Page last updated at 12:16 GMT, Friday, 1 May 2009 13:16 UK

Collingwood accepts T20 captaincy


Report - Collingwood given captaincy

All-rounder Paul Collingwood will captain hosts England in the ICC World Twenty20 tournament in June.

The 32-year-old has been given the job just nine months after he resigned as one-day skipper.

The 15-strong squad includes uncapped Graham Napier and Eoin Morgan and there are recalls for Kent skipper Rob Key and Essex keeper James Foster.

Andrew Flintoff has been named subject to him regaining full fitness following surgery on his right knee.

Among those left out after being named in the provisional 30-man squad are fast bowler Steve Harmison, who was dropped from the Test squad earlier this week, all-rounder Samit Patel and keepers Matt Prior and Steve Davies.

Miller champions 'special' Twenty20 squad

But Prior had the consolation of being chosen for a squad of 14 to play three one-day internationals against West Indies later this month.

England were forced to look for a Twenty20 captain after the selectors decided last month that Andrew Strauss should concentrate on Test and 50-over cricket and with Kevin Pietersen apparently unwilling to take on the job and Flintoff injured, Collingwood became the clear favourite once he declared a willingness to give the job another go.

"This is an opportunity where I will be captaining for three weeks in a World Cup and that kind of opportunity doesn't come around every day.

"I thought long and hard about it and the last thing I wanted it to do was affect other parts of my game such as Test cricket - I don't think it will do so given it's just a three-week period," he said.

BBC Sport's Oliver Brett

It was an approach from new team director Andy Flower during his recent Indian Premier League stint in South Africa, where he did not play a single game for Delhi Daredevils, which finally persuaded Collingwood to take the job.

"It was evident that he wanted me to do the job. When someone backs you as much as he did it gives you confidence and I think we can work very well together.

"He is a very honest guy and I like the way he approaches the game and the way he coaches. I hope we will have a good relationship."

Eoin Morgan
Morgan will follow compatriot Ed Joyce in playing for Ireland and England

National selector Geoff Miller admitted Key's captaincy credentials had been discussed before Collingwood was handed the role.

"We did talk about Rob. He has been very good in Twenty20 with Kent," said Miller. "There are a lot of players here now who can offer a lot on the field and in the changing room.

"We asked Paul if he was interested in doing it. He gave it a bit of thought, which is quite right, and he came back and said he would love to do it.

"The reason Paul gave up was that the captaincy was going to affect his play, but this is a three-week period and he is really excited by it."

By recalling Foster seven years after he last represented England, the selectors have acknowledged that he is rated the best gloveman by many on the county circuit.

The 29-year-old keeper told BBC Essex: "I was very surprised to be in the original 30 and I'm quite clearly delighted to be in the squad for this World Cup.

"I feel I've performed well over the last few years for Essex and have been consistent in all forms of the game but now this is a chance for me to hopefully perform in the World Twenty20."

And in picking Key, Napier and Morgan - the latter also selected in the one-day squad after making 23 appearances for Ireland - they have opted for players who have a good Twenty20 record at domestic level, although that policy did not pay off two years ago when Darren Maddy, Chris Schofield, Jeremy Snape and James Kirtley were chosen for the inaugural tournament.

"This is a mix of seniority and experience with youthful exuberance," added Miller.

England will face the Netherlands in the opening match of the tournament at Lord's on 5 June and then go on to meet Pakistan at The Oval two days later.

They will hope to progress to the Super 8s phase, as they did in South Africa two years ago, but have a poor Twenty20 record overall with only six wins in 15 matches.

The tournament climaxes with the final at Lord's on 21 June.

England Twenty20 squad (5-21 June): P Collingwood (capt), J Anderson, R Bopara, S Broad, A Flintoff, J Foster (wkt), R Key, D Mascarenhas, E Morgan, G Napier, K Pietersen, O Shah, R Sidebottom, G Swann, L Wright.

England ODI squad to play West Indies (21-26 May): A Strauss (captain), J Anderson, R Bopara, T Bresnan, S Broad, I Bell, D Mascarenhas, K Pietersen, P Collingwood, E Morgan, M Prior, O Shah, R Sidebottom, G Swann.

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see also
Notts fume at Patel over omission
01 May 09 |  Nottinghamshire
Collingwood keen on Twenty20 job
28 Apr 09 |  England
England overlook Bell and Vaughan
29 Apr 09 |  England
Flintoff knee surgery 'a success'
28 Apr 09 |  England
Strauss will miss World Twenty20
06 Apr 09 |  England
Collingwood explains resignation
03 Aug 08 |  England
Awesome Napier shatters records
24 Jun 08 |  Counties
ICC World Twenty20 squads
01 May 09 |  Cricket
ICC World Twenty20 2009 results
21 Jun 09 |  Cricket

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