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Self-belief ends England's long wait for title

Last updated on: May 17, 2010 09:25 IST

Memorable win for England

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England ended their 35-year wait for a world title with victory over Australia in the Twenty20 World Cup on Sunday thanks to a retuned playing style and a surge in self-belief, skipper Paul Collingwood said.

Not only did England knock off Australia's total of 147 for the loss of just three wickets, they did so with three full overs remaining and not even a hint of the middle order collapses that have plagued previous teams.

England had lost their four other world finals in the 50 over format -- three World Cups and a Champions Trophy -- and Collingwood said the key to finally winning was self-confidence.


Image: England's Paul Collingwood lifts the ICC World Twenty20 trophy
Photographs: Reuters
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'I think belief has been a huge thing'

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"I think belief has been a huge thing -- you can see from the way the guys have gone out from first ball, believing in themselves and taking it to the opposition and playing a brand of cricket that is unlike England in the past," he said.

"I think a lot of credit goes to every single player in the dressing room to have the confidence to go out there and really give it there best shots and have no regrets.

"We thoroughly deserve the victory, because the way we've played throughout the tournament has been consistent and we have also been taking the game to the opposition.

"We've had a lot of belief, and the guys have thought very well for themselves and made the right decisions. In the end, we've turned up on a big occasion like this and we've performed," he added.


Image: England players celebrate after the win

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Teamwork was the key to success

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Collingwood attributed the triumph to team work but single out Craig Kieswetter, Kevin Pietersen and the bowlers for special praise.

"We played consistent cricket and fought very well against all opposition. Kevin and Kieswetter and all the bowlers contributed today. We were all in it together and really jelled well as a team," said Collingwood.

"The bottom line is that we won today. We just wanted to win, whether it was in the last ball or much before that, it didn't matter to us. Over the next couple of days we will love to savour this special moment," he said.


Image: England players celebrate after a fall of a wicket

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'Huge monkey off our back'

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Collingwood now hopes England's tendency to crack under the pressure of big occasions is behind them.

"To be the first (English) team to win a World Cup is very special," he said.

"We knew it was a monkey on our back. We knew what it meant and that is why I am so pleased that these last two performances in such pressurised situations were absolutely spot on."


Image: Paul Collingwood lifts the winners trophy

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Clarke's place is in doubt

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Australia captain Michael Clarke suffered his only defeat of the World Twenty20 in Sunday's final against England and then said his position in the team could be in doubt.

Clarke struggled throughout the tournament in the Caribbean with his 27 in the final his highest score.

"There's no doubt that the selectors will need to have a look at my performances," he told reporters.

"I certainly know they haven't been up to scratch through this whole tournament and probably in Twenty20 cricket in general.

"I'm sure the selectors will sit down and have a look and if I'm not the right guy for number three and the captaincy of this team then they'll make that decision," he added.


Image: Michael Clarke

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'It's been a wonderful tournament'

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While Clarke's batting has been below the standards he expects, he has looked the part as captain and remains the favourite to replace Test skipper Ricky Ponting when he eventually retires from the five-day game.

"It's been a wonderful tournament, the boys have been so supportive. I've enjoyed every minute it. Captaining your country is a wonderful thing and I've been a very lucky boy to get that chance," said Clarke.

"There are no guarantees in this world and it's about getting back and preparing for the next tournament," he added.


Image: Australian team after picking up a wicket

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One of the greatest T20 games

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Clarke said the semi-final win over Pakistan would be remembered as one of the greatest in Twenty20 and that despite the disappointment of the final, the tournament had been a positive experience.

"We are disappointed. It's not the Ashes but it's a big tournament that we wanted to do really well in. But in saying that our guys can hold their heads high.

"I hope people have enjoyed the brand of cricket we played and we'll continue to improve in this form of cricket," he added.


Image: Mike Hussey celebrates after winning the semi-final match against Pakistan

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