England assistant coach Paul Collingwood anticipates a more hands-on role with the Test side but insists neither he nor Chris Silverwood wants to “reinvent the wheel”.
Trevor Bayliss fulfilled his mandate as head coach by overseeing England’s first-ever World Cup win but his four-year tenure ended in underwhelming fashion last summer as Australia retained the Ashes following a 2-2 series draw.
Having succeeded the Australian, Silverwood has already outlined his top priority is to improve England’s Test fortunes with a view to winning back the urn when they next go Down Under in 2021-22.
With that comes a recognition from Collingwood that the Test team will require more support from the backroom staff – starting against New Zealand later this month – than the successful limited-overs sides under Eoin Morgan.
Asked if there were any differences between the Bayliss era and the embryonic start to Silverwood’s reign, Collingwood responded: “That’s something we were both really adamant in doing. Probably our most powerful thing was to not try to change a thing.
“The white-ball form of the game is still moving in the right direction. We didn’t want to come in and reinvent the wheel when it didn’t need to be changed whatsoever.
“We’re very happy just to come in and continue in the way Trevor had the environment.
“The white-ball team are very much impulsive; they want to go out there and not think too much, not have too much structure imposed on them, they like to be able to breathe.
“Eoin Morgan is very much the head man, the leader when it comes to the white-ball stuff and how he wants it to run. We see it as a simple transition moving forward and so far it’s been very easy to move on.
“The red-ball team, they’re a lot more structured as players, red-ball cricketers tend to be like that, especially the top three (batsmen).
“You’ve got to adapt your coaching style to who you’re dealing with. The red-ball cricketers probably do need a bit more planning, preparation and structure put in there, so we’ll try to adapt that.”
The former Durham and England captain revealed on Thursday ahead of the fourth Twenty20 against the Black Caps in Napier that he was on the cusp of signing his full-time contract to become one of Silverwood’s deputies.
Having previously worked on a series-by-series basis, Collingwood, who went through an application process to land the job, said: “It’s nice not having to invoice and to get on the payroll!
“I’m delighted to be involved. The leadership of the playing group have built this really good culture and I guess it could have been damaged if they added someone from the outside with new ideas.
“This is something they’ve built over a long period, this isn’t something they’ve just done overnight, and that’s very powerful.”
Collingwood captained England to their first global trophy at the 2010 World Twenty20 but he is no longer in an exclusive club after Morgan engineered their 50-over triumph earlier this year.
The Irishman’s commitment to leading England into next year’s T20 World Cup, plus their strong top-order, means Collingwood is bullish about their prospects of a limited-overs double.