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14-May-2010 05:04:00 GMT
ICC Twenty20 World Cup, 2010, Final

Collingwood Eager to Face Australia in Final

Gros Islet: England captain Paul Collingwood said "everyone would love to see" his side play Australia in the final of the ICC World Twenty20 after his team brushed aside Sri Lanka.

England crushed last year's losing finalists by seven wickets, winning with four overs to spare at the Beausejour Stadium in Thursday's first semi-final. They now await the winners of the match between Australia and defending champions Pakistan, at Beausejour on Friday, in Sunday's final at the Kensington Oval in Barbados.

"I'll be watching today and be very interested," Collingwood said at the post-match presentation ceremony. But he made clear his preference for a final against England's oldest cricket rivals.

Everyone would love to see an England versus Australia final but we have to give a lot of respect to Pakistan too, so we'll wait and see who it is.

England, who lost the toss, restricted Sri Lanka to just 128 for six. Seamers Tim Bresnan, Ryan Sidebottom and man-of-the-match Stuart Broad all took early wickets as Sri Lanka collapsed to 26 for three inside five overs. Sri Lanka couldn't find a way back and England were then given a blistering start to their reply by openers Craig Kieswetter and Michael Lumb.

Kevin Pietersen - back in the team after attending the birth of his son in London - ended the match in style with a six and a four off successive deliveries from Lasith Malinga as he finished on 42 not out.

"I'm going to sound like a broken record here but full credit to our bowlers again," Collingwood added. "We lost the toss and adapted to conditions on a slow wicket. We put them under pressure and I'm delighted with how they performed. "The two guys at the top of the order, Kieswetter and Lumb, are still going at the bowlers and again got us into a good position."

Turning to Pietersen, Collingwood said: "For KP to go out and get a big not out after all he's been through in the last few days is great for the team."

Broad, named man-of-the-match for his two wickets for 21 runs, struck first ball just to get rid of Mahela Jayawardene just as Sidebottom had done before in removing another key Sri Lanka batsman in Sanath Jayasuriya.

"I'm really happy with my role in the side, especially with Siddy (Sidebottom) and Bres (Bresnan) getting wickets first up," Broad said.

My job is to come on and try and get the breakthrough in the first six. Siddy getting a wicket with his first ball was massive for us today. I'm delighted with the way the batsman are playing too, going out with no fear and expressing themselves.

Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara praised England's performance as he lamented his side's lack of runs. "We've had a great run but today is not a day we'd like to remember," he said. "Anything over 150 batting first and we'd have done very well to defend it but as 128 was about 30 runs too short.

"Everyone was hitting the ball well but we didn't make use of the opportunities," the wicketkeeper-batsman added.

We couldn't deliver but we are proud of ourselves and proud of everyone who came to support us. England are a very good side, have a very solid bowling attack and do really well with slower balls and bowling strategies. They have a great chance in the final and great depth.

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