He will take charge of the team on a temporary basis after Chris Silverwood quit as head coach in the wake of the team’s 0-4 Ashes debacle in Australia. Apart from Silverwood, managing director Ashley Giles also left his post.
Collingwood performed the duties of head coach during England’s 2-3 T20 series defeat in the West Indies as well. Reacting to his appointment as interim head coach, the former all-rounder said:
"I am genuinely excited to be leading the Test team for the tour of the Caribbean. I can't wait to get started. Having a challenging Test series against the West Indies straight off the back of the Ashes disappointment gives us a chance from now to reset and rebuild.”
On his plans for what is, as of now, a short-term assignment, the 45-year-old asserted:
"Playing Test matches for England is the highest accolade in the game. My objective is to give players clarity, direction and encouragement for them to start building something special."
Even as Collingwood has been named interim head coach, former captain Andrew Strauss was appointed as interim managing director following Giles’ exit.
“Have spoken to Joe Root and Ben Stokes” - Paul Collingwood
While Giles and Silverwood seem to have paid the price for England’s disastrous run in red-ball cricket, Joe Root’s position as Test captain looks safe for now.
Collingwood revealed that he has spoken to Root as well as experienced all-rounder Ben Stokes. The former England skipper said:
"I have spoken to Joe Root and Ben Stokes, and both are excited and passionate to take the team forward in this new cycle. Although they know it won't be easy, they have the desire and bravery to do things differently to ensure the team can prosper. We have an opportunity to get back on track."
England will play three Tests in the West Indies from March 8 to 28. While the 1st Test will be played in Antigua, the other two will be held in Barbados and Grenada.