Collingwood looks forward to Scotland role

07 Oct

The 37-year-old Englishman was only at the start of his career when David Boon captained Durham between 1997 and 1999. Yet he was clearly absorbing lessons from the veteran of 107 tests and 181 ODIs.

"David once told us cricket was 90% mental and 10% technical and I didn't realise what he meant at the time, but I do now," said Collingwood. "I have played the Scots on a few occasions, and there is no doubt they have plenty of talent, so I believe I can help them if I get through to the players how important confidence is in the game.

"Cricket Scotland approached me last month, so it is quite a new development, but I hope it will be good for both parties and I am excited by the challenge. In the early days at Durham, we sometimes struggled against the more established counties, but people such as David got their message across and it helped us no end to turn things round," added Collingwood, who has just led the Riverside team to the LV=County Championship title.

"It looks as if it is going to be a busy winter for all of us, because I will be travelling with the squad to Dubai in November [for the World T20 qualifiers] and then moving on to New Zealand for the World Cup qualifying event in January. It is a massive challenge, but I will be playing a full part in the preparation and competitive phases of the squad and if I can play a small part in helping the Scots get through, I will be absolutely delighted."

It seems a shrewd appointment, considering the vast experience amassed by Collingwood, allied to his powers of motivation and ability to transcend questions over his talent. Furthermore, unlike some of his compatriots, he is a whole-hearted supporter of the ICC Associate countries and their ongoing attempts to keep making waves in the game.

"It is as important as the top level, because we need to encourage cricket and I will do everything that I can to assist the Scottish boys in their ambition of appearing in world competitions," said Collingwood, who is widely regarded as a natural athlete with a ferocious desire to be the best he possibly could be.

"Scotland have already been in two World Cups [in 199 and 2007], so nobody doubts the potential exists and I have seen that for myself. But the more Associate sides who are fighting for places, the better. This has all happened quickly, but you can be sure I will be pulling my sleeves up in the next few months."

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