Collingwood sits out T20 trip to Leicester

Skipper Paul Collingwood's finger injury has ruled him out of Durham's T20 trip to Leicestershire this evening

Durham Dynamos captain Paul Collingwood
Durham Dynamos captain Paul Collingwood

Durham Dynamos will be without captain Paul Collingwood for tonight’s Friends Life T20 trip to Leicestershire.

The former England all-rounder misses out with a finger injury after helping his side to victory over Yorkshire on Sunday, coach Jon Lewis revealing Collingwood will also be absent for tomorrow’s visit of Nottinghamshire.

Lewis said: “We are not even considering Paul this weekend, really. It is just a flesh wound on his finger, but it is a big flesh wound. It is a little bit day-by-day with him, but I don’t think this weekend is going to happen.”

Leicestershire are bottom of the Northern Group of the Friends Life T20 after losing both of their games in the competition, but will be hoping the presence of Leicester City’s football team at Grace Road for tonight’s 5.30pm start can improve their fortunes.

Shorn of many of his senior men after beating Yorkshire by four wickets, Durham’s coach said: “The squad will be very similar to the one which won in Scarbrough. Graeme Onions will be unavailable because the ECB are keen for him to rest following his four-day game, and apart from Paul’s injury there is not going to be too much change.

“Gareth Breese is probably going to be available, and it is good to have such an experienced one-day performer to call on. He is an option for us, but we will see what we are like when we get down to Leicester.”

With youth to the fore, the Dynamos are hoping to build on a start which has seen them winning one of their two games in the 20-over format, having lost to Lancashire Lightning in the opener a week ago.

Lewis said: “To be fair, in our first two games we have given debuts to four players, so we are not exactly flush with experience at the moment.

“Colly being injured, Dale Benkenstein being injured and Onions being unavailable have deprived us of a lot of experience, but on the flip side it has given a few guys an opportunity.

“So far those boys who have come in have done well and put their hand up, which is good for the overall squad.”

With five days between matches the coach has had valuable time to work with his players, although the start of their four-day match with Derbyshire on Monday has complicated matters in another season where they have been forced to flit between the formats.

Lewis said: “We had a couple of days off following Sunday’s win in Scarborough, which you need after playing two games in three days, but since then we have had them in and been doing quite a bit.

“At this time of year the gym is getting hit quite hard, trying to keep everyone strong for the second half of the summer, but Wednesday was quite a big day’s practice.

“We have also had to prepare for the red-ball game with starting a four-day match at home to Derbyshire on Monday, which has made it a little bit of a tricky practice week, and Wednesday of this week was really our last chance to try and get that right. Yesterday’s practice was more around fielding, but overall we are not in bad shape and it has been a useful few days for us.”

Hopeful of more sympathetic scheduling in future seasons, he added: “This year is the last time it is going to happen like this, in terms of chopping and changing between the formats during the middle of the season.

“Having the one four-day game in the middle of the T20 is a strange one, and a bit awkward to deal with, but it is the same for everyone and just one of these things you have to get on with.”

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