Pakistan v England 2011-12 January 30, 2012

Pietersen low on runs and time

His contribution to English cricket has been immense, and he had a prolific home season; but whether it his brash image or his tense relationship with Andy Flower, two poor Tests are enough to put his spot in jeopardy
178

It seems the vultures are circling. Those who have been waiting for Kevin Pietersen to stumble are ready to strike. They smell blood.

The antipathy towards Pietersen is, in many ways, hard to understand. Perhaps it derives, in part, from his South African heritage. Pietersen has a British parent, a British wife and a British child, but that seems not to be enough for some. Despite living in a mobile, multi-cultural nation, there are some that resent the fact that he was born and raised overseas.

His career record seems not to appease, either. Before Pietersen made his international debut, England had not won the Ashes for nearly two decades and had never won a global event. He played an enormous role in rectifying those blemishes.

In 2005, it was Pietersen's century at The Oval that ensured England held on to win that watershed series. Then he helped England to the World Twenty20 title in the Caribbean in 2010, batting quite superbly and winning the Man-of-the-Tournament award. He has scored 26 international centuries and only Don Bradman scored more runs in his first 25 Tests. Pietersen's contribution to England cricket has been immense.

And he is only 31. He should be coming into his prime.

But that is the problem with Pietersen: from everyone who is given much, much will be demanded. And Pietersen was given plenty. He has, at times, shown he is capable of greatness, so these forays into mediocrity are all the more frustrating.

There is no concealing the fact that Pietersen is enduring a poor tour of the UAE. He has looked all at sea against spin, has given his wicket away foolishly against seam and missed a relatively simple run-out that could have turned the second Test. He is averaging 4.25 in the Test series, either lunging forward desperately, hitting across the line in panic or guiding the ball to the fielders recklessly.

Yet, just three Tests ago, Pietersen thumped a century against India. In the ten Tests before that, he made two double centuries. Strip away the disappointment and hyperbole and he has simply endured two bad games in succession. It doesn't seem so bad, does it?

It would not be true to say he is a poor player of spin, either. Pietersen enjoyed success against Shane Warne and Muttiah Muralitharan. He has, at times, flourished against the best there have been.

He has earned - like Ian Bell and Andrew Strauss - the right for some patience. Quite rightly, none of them will be dropped in the immediate future, but all three of them face a significant challenge if they are to sustain their Test careers till the end of 2012. Three tours on Asian pitches may well make them or break them. Reputations count for little.

How much patience Pietersen will receive remains to be seen. His relationship with Andy Flower is not the warmest - their differences over the Peter Moores affair were too deep to heal completely - and Pietersen's sometimes abrasive manner will only be tolerated while he is performing. It is hard to imagine he will be extended the same lengthy opportunities to justify his selection as Paul Collingwood enjoyed.

Perhaps that is the problem. Pietersen may appear cocky and brash, but like most who wear the cloak of confidence quite so obtrusively, it conceals insecurity. Pietersen, like everyone else, needs to feel needed and supported and valued. Flower, for all his excellence, might not have the relationship with Pietersen that allows such a rapport. Flower has done wonders for English cricket, but he has not yet coaxed the very best from Pietersen. It may prove to be his only failure.

That is not to say that Pietersen's problems are Flower's fault. Pietersen must take the responsibility for his failings just as he must take the credit for his success. But England would be stronger for a fully firing Pietersen and Flower has yet to find a way to make that happen.

Flower was diplomatic but non-committal when asked about Pietersen on Sunday. "Kevin is now challenged by not scoring any runs in the first two Tests, definitely," Flower said. "But he has a record of working things out. He's a world-class player who has done a lot of great things with a bat in his hand and has helped England win a lot of games. I don't think you should undervalue some of the things he's done recently for us."

There was, however, just a hint of the frustration Flower feels when he commented about Pietersen's plans: "You're not going to learn much about Test batting in the IPL."

There was another interesting moment in a press conference with Flower after the first Test. Asked about Pietersen, he replied, "He has two more chances." At the time most of the media took that to mean on this tour. In retrospect, it might not have meant that at all.

If that is the case, then Pietersen has one more chance to prove what a fine player he can be. If he fails, he will be relying on good will to save him. And that is a resource he may find to be in scarce supply.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • CricketingStargazer on February 1, 2012, 21:54 GMT

    JG, Ravi Bopara has not managed to make a case for a place in the side and there is are a number of players comining through. Sooner or later the selectors are going to go with a young player in form and give him a run in the side or, at least, as batting reserve. As for Kieswetter, he could actually make a decent fist of opening at Test level while Prior keeps the gloves. He is a good batsman and is getting better with experience. He also has a far better record than "one day specialist" Marcus Trescothick had when first selected. Kieswetter can also cover for the openers or the middle order (in Sri Lanka he's being played at 5). There is a reason why these players are in the Lions side in Sri Lanka right now. Let's suppose that England lose in Sri Lanka too and Andrew Strauss remains short of runs: do you really think that there will not be a vacancy to open as well a place at 5 and that one of the Lions in form will not get a chance to fill it?

  • CricketingStargazer on February 1, 2012, 21:19 GMT

    JG, I understand your point: Kieswetter is far better known as a limited overs player, but has a very good First Class record, playing in Division 1 where runs are earned. Despite a poor run last summer he averaged over 40 with 2 centuries in his 9 games (only Marcus Trescothick scored more centuries for Somerset). He has 8 centuries in his 76 First Class matches.

  • JG2704 on February 1, 2012, 18:33 GMT

    @CricketingStargazer on (February 01 2012, 10:43 AM GMT) Buttler and Kieswetter are one day specialists at the moment. Buttler could well adapt to test cricket in years to come but Kieswetter would have to oust Matt Prior and that's a huge ask as Prior is probably a better batsman and definitely a better gloveman. It's a shame for Jos that Craig is in the same side as him as I feel that Jos might actually be a better WK than Craig. As for Morgan - I think the OD game is different and maybe Morgan might play with more freedom which he should do a test level now. Re Bopara - I'd disagree that he's running out of time as he's not had one game on this tour so he should be in no worse a position than pre tour when I'd say he was on a par with Morgan. I'm not saying he'd do any better though

  • JG2704 on February 1, 2012, 18:33 GMT

    @Posted by on (February 01 2012, 06:23 AM GMT) Warne and Murali were class spinners who could cause trouble for batsmen all over the world. By law of averages half of Warne's wickets would have come in Australia. So you'd say that drawing a HOME series with the 8th placed side in the last 3 months or so warrants top spot , not forgetting the result of the last Ashes series just over a year ago? SA are a more consistent side but even they have dropped tests/series which they should have won. Reckon if you did a win percentage of England over the last 2 years - even inc a 3-0 defeat to Pak - they'd still come out on top of any test playing nation. It wouldn't surprise me if that would still be the case if they lost 2-0 to SL as well.

  • JG2704 on February 1, 2012, 12:54 GMT

    @spence1324 on (January 31 2012, 18:26 PM GMT) Thanks for response. My main point is that I believe that English fans like KP. Re IPL , I'm not sure either way. I definitely think it might help our OD specialists. I'd like to see some of our guys playing some longer fmt cricket in SC . KP (among others) has had few issues playing in England anyway

  • Yevghenny on February 1, 2012, 12:05 GMT

    I will never understand people who want to drop Pietersen.

  • CricketingStargazer on February 1, 2012, 10:43 GMT

    Busie1979, it is not beside the point that both Jos Butler and Craig Kieswetter are scoring big runs in Sri Lanka with the Lions right now. Kieswetter was a late addition to the squad and made an immediate impact with a murderous century. My guess is that both Morgan and Bopara are running out of time and that at least one of Butler and Kieswetter will go to Sri Lanka with the full side. Kieswetter also has the advantage of having experience at international level: he lost his place and then got it back on the basis of big scoring. Bairstow is probably not far behind either.

  • LillianThomson on February 1, 2012, 9:53 GMT

    Test cricket is a battle for the best, not the most popular. It doesn't matter in the slightest whether Pietersen's team-mates like him, they are professionals and he is the outstanding England batsman of this generation and they just need to get on with it. Australia showed in the last five years what happens when you marginalise or exclude players on the basis of their behaviour and attitudes. They could ill-afford to lose Andrew Symonds when they did, or to have Warne and MacGill retire prematurely because they couldn't stomach boot-camp nonsense. England are already carrying Strauss and Morgan who in 2012 are both incapable of being Test batsmen. Pietersen is part of the solution, not the problem.

  • on February 1, 2012, 7:07 GMT

    i love Pietersen scoring runs against anyone but not Pakistan ! He is great player a quality attacking player happy he is not in form

  • on February 1, 2012, 6:23 GMT

    in my opinion pietersen doesnt play spin well just like the other england batsmen. many people think he is a great player of spin because he did well against shane warne and muttiah muralitharan. remember he played against them mostly in england when he scored a bulk of runs against them. if u check out his subcontinent record its poor. in my opnion the best team in the world is either south africa or australia. i would give it to australia at the moment. because they are the only team outside the subcontinent that did well lately in the subcontinent. south africa have not played in a while so we dont know there strength in asia currently. england will ever be poor in the subcontinent, because there batsmen naturally like to hang on the backfoot

  • CricketingStargazer on February 1, 2012, 21:54 GMT

    JG, Ravi Bopara has not managed to make a case for a place in the side and there is are a number of players comining through. Sooner or later the selectors are going to go with a young player in form and give him a run in the side or, at least, as batting reserve. As for Kieswetter, he could actually make a decent fist of opening at Test level while Prior keeps the gloves. He is a good batsman and is getting better with experience. He also has a far better record than "one day specialist" Marcus Trescothick had when first selected. Kieswetter can also cover for the openers or the middle order (in Sri Lanka he's being played at 5). There is a reason why these players are in the Lions side in Sri Lanka right now. Let's suppose that England lose in Sri Lanka too and Andrew Strauss remains short of runs: do you really think that there will not be a vacancy to open as well a place at 5 and that one of the Lions in form will not get a chance to fill it?

  • CricketingStargazer on February 1, 2012, 21:19 GMT

    JG, I understand your point: Kieswetter is far better known as a limited overs player, but has a very good First Class record, playing in Division 1 where runs are earned. Despite a poor run last summer he averaged over 40 with 2 centuries in his 9 games (only Marcus Trescothick scored more centuries for Somerset). He has 8 centuries in his 76 First Class matches.

  • JG2704 on February 1, 2012, 18:33 GMT

    @CricketingStargazer on (February 01 2012, 10:43 AM GMT) Buttler and Kieswetter are one day specialists at the moment. Buttler could well adapt to test cricket in years to come but Kieswetter would have to oust Matt Prior and that's a huge ask as Prior is probably a better batsman and definitely a better gloveman. It's a shame for Jos that Craig is in the same side as him as I feel that Jos might actually be a better WK than Craig. As for Morgan - I think the OD game is different and maybe Morgan might play with more freedom which he should do a test level now. Re Bopara - I'd disagree that he's running out of time as he's not had one game on this tour so he should be in no worse a position than pre tour when I'd say he was on a par with Morgan. I'm not saying he'd do any better though

  • JG2704 on February 1, 2012, 18:33 GMT

    @Posted by on (February 01 2012, 06:23 AM GMT) Warne and Murali were class spinners who could cause trouble for batsmen all over the world. By law of averages half of Warne's wickets would have come in Australia. So you'd say that drawing a HOME series with the 8th placed side in the last 3 months or so warrants top spot , not forgetting the result of the last Ashes series just over a year ago? SA are a more consistent side but even they have dropped tests/series which they should have won. Reckon if you did a win percentage of England over the last 2 years - even inc a 3-0 defeat to Pak - they'd still come out on top of any test playing nation. It wouldn't surprise me if that would still be the case if they lost 2-0 to SL as well.

  • JG2704 on February 1, 2012, 12:54 GMT

    @spence1324 on (January 31 2012, 18:26 PM GMT) Thanks for response. My main point is that I believe that English fans like KP. Re IPL , I'm not sure either way. I definitely think it might help our OD specialists. I'd like to see some of our guys playing some longer fmt cricket in SC . KP (among others) has had few issues playing in England anyway

  • Yevghenny on February 1, 2012, 12:05 GMT

    I will never understand people who want to drop Pietersen.

  • CricketingStargazer on February 1, 2012, 10:43 GMT

    Busie1979, it is not beside the point that both Jos Butler and Craig Kieswetter are scoring big runs in Sri Lanka with the Lions right now. Kieswetter was a late addition to the squad and made an immediate impact with a murderous century. My guess is that both Morgan and Bopara are running out of time and that at least one of Butler and Kieswetter will go to Sri Lanka with the full side. Kieswetter also has the advantage of having experience at international level: he lost his place and then got it back on the basis of big scoring. Bairstow is probably not far behind either.

  • LillianThomson on February 1, 2012, 9:53 GMT

    Test cricket is a battle for the best, not the most popular. It doesn't matter in the slightest whether Pietersen's team-mates like him, they are professionals and he is the outstanding England batsman of this generation and they just need to get on with it. Australia showed in the last five years what happens when you marginalise or exclude players on the basis of their behaviour and attitudes. They could ill-afford to lose Andrew Symonds when they did, or to have Warne and MacGill retire prematurely because they couldn't stomach boot-camp nonsense. England are already carrying Strauss and Morgan who in 2012 are both incapable of being Test batsmen. Pietersen is part of the solution, not the problem.

  • on February 1, 2012, 7:07 GMT

    i love Pietersen scoring runs against anyone but not Pakistan ! He is great player a quality attacking player happy he is not in form

  • on February 1, 2012, 6:23 GMT

    in my opinion pietersen doesnt play spin well just like the other england batsmen. many people think he is a great player of spin because he did well against shane warne and muttiah muralitharan. remember he played against them mostly in england when he scored a bulk of runs against them. if u check out his subcontinent record its poor. in my opnion the best team in the world is either south africa or australia. i would give it to australia at the moment. because they are the only team outside the subcontinent that did well lately in the subcontinent. south africa have not played in a while so we dont know there strength in asia currently. england will ever be poor in the subcontinent, because there batsmen naturally like to hang on the backfoot

  • SaleemSabir on February 1, 2012, 6:22 GMT

    Anothe pthatic attemp to efen the Poor perfrmancof English tam by remindin us how great thy have been in the Past and what they have achieved in the Past :-)

  • Busie1979 on February 1, 2012, 3:43 GMT

    The fact is England have 4 world class batsman in their test team, a solid opener (Strauss) and a very good wicket-keeper batsman. The only serious question mark is Morgan. To say there is no bench strength is strange - looking at the Lions squad, Taylor, Hayes, Buttler and even Kieswetter all look like they have something to offer. This is based on their stats rather than me having ever seen them play. Leave Pieterson alone - I am sure Andy Flower knows his class and that there is no plot to get rid of him. It would be more satisfying to see Australia win the Ashes with Pieterson playing than without him - we want to beat England (or is that South Africa?) at full strength. There is only one Ajmal - England should not overreact.

  • Hassanmir on January 31, 2012, 20:34 GMT

    To me he is one of the best of the current era. Its shockingly funny that they are thinking of leaving him out of the side. Its not to do with the talent or batting technique with KP, its in the head. Much more like Umar Akmal from Pakistan. Pakistan cricket management is stupid enough to leave UmarAkmal out but its surprising to me that the English team management is following the footsteps. Give the guy some time !!!

  • LordOfCric on January 31, 2012, 19:43 GMT

    Indians will surely be surprised when England give them a hard time. Things are not same as old, Indian bowling attack is worse than Zimbabwe. While England bowling unit is at peek its a wrong time for Indian bat to be out of form...................

  • 5wombats on January 31, 2012, 19:24 GMT

    @immi2711 on (January 30 2012, 13:42 PM GMT) - what a WONDERFUL uplifting and gracious comment from a follower of a team in victory. On behalf of all sincere and passionate England fans - the wombats warmly thank you. The True Spirit of sportsmanship. Fans of another country could learn much from your philosophy.

  • spence1324 on January 31, 2012, 18:26 GMT

    @JG2704 Im a england fan and I like KP always have,my only concern like Mr flower said is you can not learn test batting in the IPL look at the indians thay have totaly lost the plot because of that tournament I say give the money back and play some first class games for surrey!

  • Arrow011 on January 31, 2012, 18:11 GMT

    This KP fellow is a form player, he is not class. He thrives only where English is a Native language & he wants to see that crowd to come back in form. In UAE his career is fading, in Srilanka his scores will be worse than what he has scored in UAE & in India he will be buried. These are the consecutive 3 tours for England. When they go back to England after India tour they will be somewhere in world number 3-4. It is indeed a flash in the pan that England became world num. 1 with so many back yard bullies who do not have any skill to play club level spin attack of sub-continent. It wont be a surprise if they lose 8-0 or 9-0 in ALL 3 tours.

  • JG2704 on January 31, 2012, 18:06 GMT

    I do agree with those who say that our reserve talent in batting isn't great and coming into a side which is playing well and winning is a whole lot easier than coming into a side which is losing and not playing well (esp in terms of batting). But regardless I don't see anyone really screaming to get into the England side as a batsman. I mean folk talk about Taylor , but he averages just below 50 (pretty similar to KP and most of the middle order batsmen) and that's playing division 2 cricket. I know 50 over cricket is different from test cricket but it seems that Taylor has performed badly on the SC tours. Besides the old "It's what has won us games in the past..." can anyone come up with any reason why we don't go for another bowler at the expense of a batsman? It's surely got to be worth a try especially when we seem to have more rickes in this department.

  • FLying.Horse on January 31, 2012, 17:33 GMT

    Stopr Cricising KP Or Any Other Batman,,ITs NOt A Rocket Science TO tackle Teams Lyk Pak IND ANd SL,,,WE Just ?Need TO Follow this Plan 1., Ban English Cricketer,s For Playing IPL,, (Pak Player,s R Not Alowed To Play in IPL Or Champion LEague N The Results r Shown) 2.. Strick All English Player,s To PArticipate in Domestic Events Rather Then Playing IPS WhichIS NOthing But Entertainment,, 3; County,s Should MAde Slow Spinning Tracks Lyk OVAL N Sign l Best Spinner,s Of The WOrld Currently TO PArticipate in Englihs Domestic Leagues, SO ENglish Batsman COuld Get MOre PRactice Agianst them,,, It SWOuld Not Only Improve Thir Technique Agints SPin But Also Help Them TO tackle When They Play in Bilatteral Series,,, 4,, AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST,, FIRE ANDY FLOWER N HIRE ME AS I HAVE A BETTER GAME PLAN,,LOLX

  • on January 31, 2012, 15:52 GMT

    KP should'nt be made a scapegoat for this tour as he is just one cog in a completely malfunctioning batting order. But in last two we've only seen glimpes of the KP who burst onto the international scene. For me has lost some of the desire and drive he once had, wether this be how he lost the captancy or the feeling he would rather be at home with his wife and child (which I understand), I dont know.

  • on January 31, 2012, 15:09 GMT

    Let Pieterson play against us Aussies he always does well

  • foursandsixes on January 31, 2012, 15:08 GMT

    @Randy you will get your wish when Eng tour India and lose 0-3, with or without KP.

  • bkp120 on January 31, 2012, 15:01 GMT

    Incredible, I'm no England fan but the fact this is even a conversation is incredible. Despite England being no. 1 he is still the only England batsman that you could rate as world class. The guy avgs. over 70 over the last twelve months, arrogance aside I would take him over Trott, Bell, Bopara, Morgan anyday.

  • on January 31, 2012, 11:14 GMT

    He is one best player in England. It is right that he needs to be send back - but at nets not home.

  • stormy16 on January 31, 2012, 11:09 GMT

    This is absurd and surely media hype. KP has proven his worth and the last time this subject came up he responded with a double hundred in Aus and followed up with another in the last series against India. Surely there cannot be an issue with pressure on KP to hold his place. THe real problem I reckon is Morgan. He has been given plenty of opportunities and done little to prove himself. If Eng for some reason want to panic with knee jerk reactions, the starting point has to be Morgan. Yes history counts for little when you've been bowled out two tests in a row but this Eng batting order is still one of the strongest in the world.

  • Uttsbaby on January 31, 2012, 11:06 GMT

    Wow 2 poor test matches and already talk of his removal. How he's rated in the same class as Bell is beyond me. Pieterson and Strauss are in the hall of legends of english batsmen as they have withstood the ages. Cook looks to be heading there too. There is no replacement for him. He's played some sublime cricket over the years, he's earned the right not to have this pressure on his shoulders after 2 games.

  • Swannyscat on January 31, 2012, 10:53 GMT

    Why are we even talking about this? Is this the guy who averaged 73.10 in Test cricket last year - his most successful year in Tests (his second being 2006 when he averaged 53.72 a full 20 runs lower). His last match before these last two matches where all the top order have been below their best he scored 63 and 175 against the then number one team in the world. I wouldn't blame him if he sacked off England and sold his soul to the IPL - at least people might appreciate what a quality player he is there. Two bad matches doesn't make a bad player.

  • on January 31, 2012, 10:42 GMT

    The issue currently seems to be that if the solid top 3 fail, we have little behind it. Bell has always been a "fair weather" player who rarely steps up when the chips are down, Morgan has never been, and never will be, a Test batsman, and KP? Well, a mediocre club left arm spinner would currently fancy his chances. Scrap Morgan now and play 5 bowlers (Prior, Broad and Swann can easily step up a place), then if things up top don't improve soon Taylor and Hales, to name two, must be groomed ASAP.

  • on January 31, 2012, 10:38 GMT

    I don't see any1 capable of replacing him. Even if England had the depth of batting they had in bowling I don't see a case for dropping our only flair player (except Morgan-and he clearly is no test player!).

  • JG2704 on January 31, 2012, 10:00 GMT

    Sherley North Southworth said that KP is disliked by both SA and English. I'd be interested to know if there are any England fans out there who dislike KP ?

  • Martensad on January 31, 2012, 8:58 GMT

    England has a long history of not appreciating its SA imports, and also of dumping them prematurely. Lamb and the Smith brothers are good examples. And KP was completely shafted over the captaincy.

  • Jwara on January 31, 2012, 8:53 GMT

    if I had a record like that of pieterson I would rejoice at these whispering campaign against him. Make no mistake he is an awesome player. He has just played 2 silly shots in lost test matches. He does not deserve this kind of thing. But I'm a south african who feels the chickens have come out to roost. Enjoy your stew for now. I know that u can score a 200 in the next test match. I'm gonna enjoy this moment of self doubt and lean form for you.

  • on January 31, 2012, 7:22 GMT

    KP is a maverick but a good cricketer.He does not conform and likes to do things his way.Cricket is for men of high talent and conformism.Do away with that and it is like sitting on Brighton pier and watching the sea.Cricket is bigger than the individual. Keep to the traditions

  • satish619chandar on January 31, 2012, 6:42 GMT

    5wombats : 3 will become 8 sooner than later.. If SL and India are allowed to prepare spinning pitches by the great ICC..

  • on January 31, 2012, 5:07 GMT

    KP at his best should be a top 5 batsmen in all formats of the game, why he is not is a riddle only andy flower can solve..

  • on January 31, 2012, 4:53 GMT

    its sad To see Him In that Position But If You remember His Bad Time Started After IPL I Dont Know Y But I Think His Mind Is Stuck Some Where In IPL Or They (indians) Made Him Feel That He Has Done alot For a Country Whcih was Never His Country? Ofcourse At The End Of Day Money Matters

  • on January 31, 2012, 4:52 GMT

    You cant blame KP only. Watch out Morgan, Bell, Strauss also. they haven't had a good series so far. also see how Ajmal and Rehman is bowling. They definitely cant "battable".

  • Gizza on January 31, 2012, 3:18 GMT

    Why doesn't the English press go hard on Trott and Morgan who also essentially foreigners (Trott played in U19 South Africa)? It is very bizarre for the country to hate their best aggressive batsmen especially when the team only has two quality batsmen (KP and Cook). There's nobody within England that can replace Pietersen at the moment and in the foreseeable future. There may be adequate replacements found in South Africa, Ireland and elsewhere in the world but that is another matter :P

  • on January 31, 2012, 2:57 GMT

    This is ludicrous. Yeah, KP's form in this series reads 14,1,2,0 (recent first), but before that it was 175, 63, 29, 63, 202*. Get off his back?

  • abbyk2 on January 31, 2012, 2:49 GMT

    KP should not be made a scaprgoat for the current batting failures of the England team.The Englamd coaching staff should be held responsible they did not do their homework prior to this test series,did they really think Uma Gul,Junaid,Cheema and Riaz were going to bowl out the number 1Test Team in the world.I dont think so,Rehman and Ajmal were the two danger men and England did not see them comming, they have been given a sucker punch and lets be honest if Monty had not been picked for the 2nd Test England may well have suffered an innings defeat ,as for the left handers in the England team they should have been shown tapes of how Kumar Sangakara handled Ajmal and Rehman in the recent series. England have to make a change for the next test possibly Davis for Morgan. Bell to open so he doesnt have to face spin straight away( a right and left copening combination ) with Struss in at 3.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on January 31, 2012, 2:33 GMT

    If at all there is any naturally talented batsman who is even more aggressive and brutal than Lara, then that batsman is none other than our KP. He belongs to the world of cricket. He doesn't belong just only to England. Wonder what joy people derive by baying for his blood and criticising him incessantly. Cut The Champ some slack guys. Some unfair Brits and skewed media are never going to realise the greatness of KP until the day he hangs up his boots. Let that natural talent blossom the way only 'it' knows. Give me a KP and take any of my Dravid/VVS/Kallis/Ponting/Shiv/Trott/Bell/Sachin/Younis/Hussey/Sanga/Mahela any day. Only Brian Lara is ahead of KP in batsmanship. I say that may be because I'm a huge fan of Lara. Wonder what KP would have achieved if the unfair media can leave him alone. No, they can't. Coz, KP sells bigtime. So whatever he does or says, we have to bash him, beat him and criticise him no end. Shame! BTW, I'm no Brit. I'm an Indian.

  • yorkshirematt on January 31, 2012, 1:26 GMT

    For all England's depth in the bowling department, the opposite is true of the batting. None of the promising youngsters such as Taylor and Buttler are ready for test cricket yet, especially not in the subcontinent. Just look at their statistics in the lions matches in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Nothing special. As much as I would like Pietersen to be dropped, and Morgan as well there really is no one better at the moment, which rweally is a worry. We'd better hope the likes of Taylor and Buttler step up over the next year or so or, after losing their number one status, they won't be getting it back anytime soon

  • Harry_Kool on January 31, 2012, 0:34 GMT

    From an Aussie pov, I would rather he wasn't on the other side than in it when we play the Poms. I can't believe this is worth a topic for discussion. Pieterson is their only true world class batsman at this level.

  • on January 31, 2012, 0:25 GMT

    A series or two against the lower-tier teams such as Bang, NZ, WI & Zim would get KP back into form in a jiffy. India would make good cannon fodder too. Just what the cricket doctor would order. Get off the man's back. He's experiencing a rough patch, but is too good a batman not to come good eventually. Correct: a huge dosage of humility won't hurt either.

  • cricket_fan_1980 on January 30, 2012, 23:56 GMT

    Guys, leave KP alone, give him some time, he is arguably the most talented cricketer in the English squad. I mean, he scored two double hundreds in the last 11 tests!! Look at Strauss and Morgan first.

  • on January 30, 2012, 23:03 GMT

    "The antipathy towards Pietersen is, in many ways, hard to understand." for cricinfo maybe. I've always thought the way you played his little cheerleaders on this site was it's one major flaw. you've been bigging him up for years in the face of average results. (eg. named in englands all time XI, name over sangakkara in test team of 2011, the way you all went ape when he was picked up in the IPL)

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on January 30, 2012, 22:54 GMT

    Amazing isn't it that a batsman who has taken apart every other attack in the world, and ones far better than this current Pakistajn one, can't play the straight on orthodox offspin, the kind of which you learn to bat against when you first play cricket. He needs a therapist.

  • iTest_Cricket on January 30, 2012, 22:48 GMT

    KP is a world class player. 2 bad tests shoudn't prove to be his downfall. When he gets going, he wins u matches single handely. Althoug I hope he conntinues his poor perfomance in UAE, coz I want Pak to win

  • ved_mishra on January 30, 2012, 22:05 GMT

    Come on. You cannot write off KP just like that. Just wait for India tour. He will do wonders. Any out of form player gets into supreme form against India (especially in Test matches). Look at Ricky and Micky!!!

  • on January 30, 2012, 21:53 GMT

    Second paragraph of this article seems spot on, looking at the behaviour of English people towards oversea's born player. By the way, which England born player was up to the mark in recent defeats.

  • KiwiPom on January 30, 2012, 21:49 GMT

    To make runs at test level you first have to earn the right to do so. These days he neither wants to do the hard yards at the start of his innings nor fight through a bad patch in the middle of it. There used to be a time when he held the batting together. USED to be.

  • AvidCricFan on January 30, 2012, 21:48 GMT

    KP may score well against the same attack if they play in England. I don't think the Pakistani bowling is any great. They have advantage of subcontinent pitches. However, he badly needs India series to get back in form just like Ponting!!

  • ProdigyA on January 30, 2012, 21:25 GMT

    Fact of the matter is - English- you cannot play Cricket, thats it. The best thing you could have done is invent cricket and there ends the story. Winning matches here n there, win the ashes once in a while after being murdered and burried everytime, DOES NOT MAKE YOU NO. 1, not does it mean you can play cricket. Just concentrate on your football, which you are not good at either. But dont quit cricket all together, we need somebody to play "football" with, once in a while.

  • JG2704 on January 30, 2012, 20:50 GMT

    KP isn't looking great , but neither is Strauss , Morgan or Bell. We have one spare batsmen in Bopara - 2 if you include Davies. Does anyone think that any of these guys could come into a batting line up which has just been bowled out for less than 100 and less than 200 in 2 of the previous 3 inns. It's so much easier coming into a winning side than it is a struggling side. Personally I'd bring in Finn for Morgan. I have said that we should have had 5 bowlers from before the series started so this is not a kneejerk reaction. I feel an extra form bowler does more for the team than an out of form batsman. I'll also add that they are in danger of Broad or Anderson picking up a strain injury or burnout with just 2 pacers and we surely can't think of dropping any of our bowlers when it's our batsmen who have underperformed

  • Rivi2 on January 30, 2012, 20:45 GMT

    Is there a tour against India? He should be alright after that.

  • Patchmaster on January 30, 2012, 20:01 GMT

    He has to stay in the team I reckon, but the BATTING COACH needs to work harder with him - how come Graham Gooch is never interviewed or ever held accountable - because lets face it, Mr Gooch is paid an awful lot of money to ensure that batting collapses are a thing of the past - so it looks like Gooch should be sacked way before KP.

  • doosra95 on January 30, 2012, 20:01 GMT

    Now look at it from Pakistan batting line up when they went to England in 2006 and summer of 2010 and some of their players were found wanting against pace English players and the British press ridiculing the Pakistan batting line up,How does it feel for England to be on the receiving end on some of the flattest pitches it speaks volume for Pakistan bowling attack particularly spinners, where the technique and temperament is exposed.Remember Pakistan also playing in a foreign land "not home" series at all it is a MASSIVE achievement!

  • spockontherock on January 30, 2012, 19:49 GMT

    Well if you want to bring anybody back to form, play them against India lol

  • oze13 on January 30, 2012, 19:26 GMT

    Who are England going to replace any of their batsmen with? There's only Ravi Bopara on the bench. His record is pretty average and he could only replace Morgan who's record is just about the same. The 'reserve' cupboard is bare!

  • on January 30, 2012, 18:55 GMT

    PiyushD: Obviously 3-0 and 4-0 are different results, so no, it is not the same. But a whitewash certainly would be a HUGE failure. Anyway, Pieterson had a fantastic year at home. He should certainly not be at risk after two bad games, any more than Bell. Morgan certainly has the biggest chance of being dropped in the near future, as he had not yet fully cemented his place even in the summer of becoming #1. He did have some good scores though. Personally I don't think the team should be changed just yet. I doubt Ravi Bopara would have done anything special. England as a whole have to improve against spin.

  • on January 30, 2012, 18:36 GMT

    @Paul Rone-Clarke: Mis-use of talent is a tricky thing. Some people just buy more good-will and patience. And some are so talented, than prolonged lean trot never quite shakes our faith in them. Pietersen is indeed a highly skilled man, who deserves more patience, but more acceptance. Something about his tough exterior says he wishes he was accorded the same universal acceptance from media, fans and dressing room as some lesser performers. In all honesty, though - Ramps, Crawley and Key were all found out at the top level.. more so, after they endured slumps, they always seemed happy to score at first class level and assuage that pain. Never quite bite back at top level. Caddick, Lewis were mentally frail, and Malcolm far too inconsistent. Only Tufnell deserved more - at least the kind of treatment Swann got, he was a matchwinner. And Hick is an anomaly we'd never quite understand .. the exception which proves the rule, perhaps.

  • on January 30, 2012, 18:34 GMT

    No matter his true merits, KP holds the record for the most irresponsible performance by any star batsman - against SA at Headingley in 2008. When nightwatchman Jimmy Anderson was dismissed after a wonderfu, resilientl innings (34 runs off 80 balls in 112 mins), England were 109-3 in their second inns and still 210 behind SA's mammoth 1st inns. What does KP do? 4-4-1 (over) 4 - W. 13 runs in five balls including the one that dismissed him, even worse than debutant Brian Close's "Suicide Innings". KP seemingly thrives in the role of bully against attacks not in gear, but when the boot is on the other foot, he's inexplicably incapable of rising to the occasion - unlike the true greats. Alas, he's too old to change now and accustomed to be an automatic pick no matter how poor his form, confidence and/or atitude.

  • AMONI on January 30, 2012, 18:24 GMT

    Prior to this series. England played India and in those 3 test matches KP was the leading run getter with 533 runs ( 2 100s, 2 50s) and a 202*. So I dont think anyone should be worried about him not scoring runs in the last 2 matches. He will come good, but credit to the Pakistani bowling who is the best attack in the world.

  • Trickstar on January 30, 2012, 18:07 GMT

    LOL Dobell , as always the easy target is up for the chop, is it any reason KP gets under pressure with constant articles like these after a bad couple of tests. Even Ponting who was appalling for nearly 3 years didn't get this much attention. If you haven't been watching England play, they don't drop guys after two test failures but hey it must be quiet in the cricketing world, it's news about KP. Anyone would think you'd never watched KP's career, at his so called best he was doing this kind of thing a couple of poor tests, where he looked useless, then all of a sudden he would score a big hundred and then go on another run of scoring loads, it's just how he rolls. As if England don't want him against SA this summer, he will be England's main man. Morgan who shouldn't have been in the side to start with, who even couldn't score runs against the poor Indian attack and looks like a walking wicket all the time is the one to go.

  • donda on January 30, 2012, 18:05 GMT

    yeh, england just go ahead and start dis respecting your super star like indian do. Every cricketer goes through rough time and only patience and hard work can get them out of it. Pieterson has won a lot for england but now he has no respect like Indian old legends.

    What a tragedy that just because of two three loses away from home make media and fan thinks that a great player is nothing but a club level player.

    Give respect to all your legends in cricket and give them enough time to come back to form as Ponting came back to form.

  • SagirParkar on January 30, 2012, 17:45 GMT

    i do not think that Pietersen isnt liked for his former nationality.. Instead it is his cavalier approach, big ego, lack of responsibility and lack of consistency in batting that is more worrying for England. If KP was in South Africa or Australia, he'd have been dropped long ago based on his batting form. When a player has been kicked out of his former country and two other counties in England in a not so very pleasant manner, it does raise questions about a player's commitment, likeability and ability to be part of a team..

  • drdickdixon on January 30, 2012, 17:36 GMT

    Another short memory strikes again - he's been doubted before and came back strongly and the last couple of Tests aside. And as for his not being accepted by the English, any player that plays rashly will be harshly treated, English origin or not.

    I was at the Oval in 2005 when he walked back after his big century and I've never heard such a roar - and haven't since - as he raised his bat to the crowd. We don't like him, eh?

    It's also interesting to see the negative Bel timid/wallflowerl comments raising their head after a stellar year and couple of failures...

  • on January 30, 2012, 17:35 GMT

    i thank pietersen has a bad pitch, once it stay away he will be emerge a new and reliable Keven Pietersen and the time will come soon be patient with K.Pietersen. I personally think he is the most successive Batsmen of English team who played a vital role in ashes success.

  • Peterincanada on January 30, 2012, 17:11 GMT

    This story is really about human nature. When a company is struggling and changes must be made, the first person to come under fire is the one outside the clique, who can't get along with the others for whatever reason. Cricket is no different. I don't like KP very much because he is a cricketing mercenary who jumped the SA ship for no real reason except $$$. That said he is probably the last or next to last batsman who should be dropped on the basis of talent, form and record.

  • doughyinperth on January 30, 2012, 16:59 GMT

    Can anyone tell me where batting coach Gooch is inthis " hour of need" for ALL the batter?

  • 6Jack on January 30, 2012, 16:55 GMT

    Pietersen should be a million miles away from being dropped considering Morgan is averaging 31 in his test career which let's be honest is dreadful considering a lot of the time he's come in under no pressure apart from this series.

    Anyone wanting KP dropped really knows nothing at all about cricket. You don't drop a player because of 2 bad tests when he has a great record for the previous year.

  • on January 30, 2012, 16:53 GMT

    There is no substitute for KP, J.Taylor can walk straight into Morgan's shoes but KP could've, should've been and all time England great... 'Truth is, alot of the English animosity towards KP is old blood, there's still a feeling within certain circles that it's his fault that Vaughan retired, and therefore his fault we lost vs South Africa in 2008 when he tried to bring up his ton by smacking Harris out of the park and getting caught

  • on January 30, 2012, 16:39 GMT

    This last test was anybody's game. Pakistan prevailed and snatch the victory. England did well they did good. 150 was competitive target. Yes England made some mistakes which made them lose by 72 runs but I think English fans and media should not bash England team. Kevin Peteirson is a good player and he will come back strong, I like Eoin Morgon but he is the one that should be considered to drop because I havn't seen him playing big innings in test match. Good luck to both teams in 3rd test and I hope both teams put up a good fight and in the end may the best team wins :)

  • on January 30, 2012, 16:28 GMT

    Which of the England batsmen *has* played the Pakistani spinners with any conviction at all? Answer: none of them - not even Cook or Trott. It's Strauss's head that should be on the block now; & not just because he's almost 35. He's scored precisely one century in his last 27 Tests, he appears to lose concentration at pivotal moments, he seems incapable of playing lengthy innings anymore &, despite possessing the virtue of being an excellent motivator, he's far too conservatively-minded as a captain. Add to that the fact that, with vitally important series coming up in the sub-continent against both Sri Lanka & India, he's *still* completely clueless against any halfway decent spinner, & you have a recipe for further disasters such as the one which befell us at Abu Dhabi, where he set entirely the wrong tone for England's run chase by playing every ball as if it were a potential hand grenade. Time to blood Joe Root against Sri Lanka & the Windies, I feel.

  • Spelele on January 30, 2012, 16:24 GMT

    I honestly have no idea why people keep reffering to KP's record since the Ashes?? Every English (in his case South African English) batsman's record "since the Ashes" is inflated because they all faced poor attacks since then. The Australian attack during the Ashses was totally toothless, not to mention that ENG mostly batted second on Day 2 and 3 pitches (always the best for batting). Since then, they have not faced any attack of note, having faced India without Zaheer (not that that's any more difficult of late), and a rebuilding Srilanka missing Murali and Malinga. Look how they've all been exposed. Where has the form gone all of a sudden?? Answer: there was never any form, just poor attacks. They'll be bowled out for similar scores against SA in June, and whenever they'll play NZ and Aus. Watch this space.

  • stari09 on January 30, 2012, 16:12 GMT

    Over rated. So far up himself it's not funny. Phil Tufnell was better in the field than this man.

  • DingDong420 on January 30, 2012, 16:08 GMT

    Bell (i know what he did last year) & Morgan are bigger worries even Strauss. i wouldnt worry about KP. Bopara has to come in for the next one!!

  • bladder on January 30, 2012, 16:03 GMT

    re: Mayan Mansilu. The same could be said of Graeme Hick. His career may have panned out very differently with Zimbabwe. Still a legend though (albeit underachieving).

  • Bang_La on January 30, 2012, 15:29 GMT

    Bangladesh showed the way for Pietersen to be on low runs and time, give them credit :)

  • on January 30, 2012, 15:23 GMT

    @ CricketingStargazer on watchin low scoring matches in this series i don think pieterson will be having his murderous innings in this series may be he can in sri lanka or india but he should be content with 50 plus if he manages to absorb pressure and played well .Dropping pieterson is not solution cos though Eng have worldclass replacements in bowling dept they don have in batting dept .They have to content with these players give them three subcontinent series try them if they fail miserably then filter them out.

  • Manush on January 30, 2012, 15:22 GMT

    Unnecessary extra pressure on players by these kind articles. Enough was written Ponting and he silenced every one like Dravid or Sachin and recently even Kallis.Tough he just failed along with all others why single out Pietersen ? It is not fair at all. Right from Strauass up to Morgan nothing big happened so far. Very poor team show against spin

  • YorkshirePudding on January 30, 2012, 15:06 GMT

    Dobell, I would suggest your articles are low on quality and running out of time as well. Just who would replace KP Taylor, avg sub 30's against Bangladesh A, Bairstow/Buttler who are Wicketkeepers, god forbid you suggest Ropey-Bopara whos nothing short of a disappointment at international level.

  • x-squire-x on January 30, 2012, 15:02 GMT

    absolutely no similarities between kev and shewag, kev has done more for his team than shewag ever will. the only problem is that flower's ego is to huge to accomodate another ego in kev, but if one had to go, it should be flower... players like kev who is more similar to viv richards are rare. shewag on the other hand is more like chris gayle... they either fail when it matters, score a useless quickfire fifty, or an equally useless huge hundred on a worthless pitch.

  • on January 30, 2012, 14:54 GMT

    So what is the evidence that the 'vultures are circling', for a man who averaged 77 in his last season, and has now failed in only two tests?

    Have England said as much, or does it just make good copy, in which case the vultures are really journalists like the one that wrote this article....

  • Nabeel6818 on January 30, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    Indeed it's diabolical that people think that KP should be dropped. He is by far England's best batsman. He has class and one bad series and you think he should be dropped. One feels that England are also missing the trick by not playing him in ODIs and T20s. Rather its Ian Bell who should be given the axe given his constant shortcomings against quality spinners.

  • on January 30, 2012, 14:48 GMT

    @Mayan. Pietersen has never been dropped by England for tests (rested for a few ODI's) but never missed a test he wanted to play in. IN contrast SA refused to even pick the guy. How could he have been a much better player - playing for a side that wouldn't even give him a game? If you don't like the English just say so, because trying to justify yourself with statments like this..well it's just gibberish.

  • on January 30, 2012, 14:40 GMT

    If KP was an opener like Sehwag I suspect he'd get less of a hard time especially when you consider his average. If he went out at number 1/2 and attacked then poor shots would be tolerated more as you know there is someone very safe (Dravid for India, Trott for England) coming in at number 3. However since he comes in at such a pivitol position at 4 he comes under a lot more scrutiny, as if England are under pressure and he plays a stupid shot then he gets torn apart for it.

    That said I think KP needs to show some more application on tricky wickets. I would be loate to call him a flat track bully but when the chips are down he needs to play himself in carefully then be more flamboyant when he's on 50+.

  • on January 30, 2012, 14:31 GMT

    form is temporary, class is permanant!! this goes for all the world class players.. so give these guys a break,after all it's only a game...

  • bilal_mahmood on January 30, 2012, 14:24 GMT

    Kevin Pietersen is ONE of the FINEST english batsman. Failing against Pak spin attack is not such a big deal. KP is a CLASS batsman, dont' beleive me, Ask Umar Gul !! being a Pak cricket fan, if im always worried about some english batsman, its KP. Due to his ability to change the games!! if english give him hard time, he really should think about joining SA camp, he'll fit real well, no kidding.. English cricket is noooo different than ours! One day our guys are our heros, and next day they are Zeros. Mohammad Aamir rocked the world in 3 series and now he's eating taco and sour cream in uk jails ! huh! so no, KP is a great batsman. He should hang out with the likes of Javed and Gavaskar.. i'm sure they could help him attain that venom again!! Go KP.. i hate england cricket team because against sub-continent team they always have need some murdoch or tabloid crap to win.. KP is the only superb batsman they have! go KP!!

  • RohanMarkJay on January 30, 2012, 14:10 GMT

    One of the commenters I think Gerard Periera. Kept harping on about how the English team was made up of South Africans. Well Gerard you can now see how unfair your attitude is to such a top exciting cricketer, like KP. Looks like Gerard you seem to have a lot of supporters for your attitude in England. Hope KP will get through this slump and get his form back and serve the England team for many years to come. Good luck KP!

  • Juiceoftheapple on January 30, 2012, 14:01 GMT

    Just to be clear, it is the anti English majority who continually bang on about him being born in SA. The majority of Eng fans have no problem with him at all. That 2005 innings at the oval should be considered alongside Beefy's 81 exploits. He is an enigma, how else do you explain someone looking so bad against spin and batting so eratically, then banging such big hundreds. I thought he was nearing the end before the last ashes, but then he came back. Morgan's test qualities have always been in doubt (not so ODIs/T20s) but clearly this article is about KP not Morgan. The worrying part is that the potential long term replacements aren't getting the opportunity to test themselves at test level - Taylor the main one, so we may find ourselves like Aus and Ind, and the next taxis on the rank haven't got the experience. As the pair of them look so out of sorts against spin, considering the tours, I don't think either will last the year as our test middle. But will happily be proved wrong.

  • Long-Leg on January 30, 2012, 13:43 GMT

    It is not his South African origin which annoys England fans. It is rather his Ego and arrogance. Whenever he gets out to a silly shot, he says, "thats just the way I play". If I was team captain and he said that to me I would give him a thorough dressing down. Batsmen have to adapt their play to the match situation. Having said all that, he is the most naturally talented English batsmen of his generation. Surely Morgan is first in line to be dropped anyway.

  • immi2711 on January 30, 2012, 13:42 GMT

    Now calm down english people. you guys are UNBELIEVABLE, you guys are acting like Indians. NEWS FLASH...Pakistan won this on PURE LUCK. Yes it is true, look your attack is better than Pak, your batting is better & deeper & more experienced than Pak. Yes English have stumbled, yes they have failed, but for sure, English will pick up. Your batting line-up scares teams. Pakistan win, was bit of luck and bit of pressure, and a bit of good spin bowling, by NO means they are good enough to WIN a lot. You CANNOT say Pak batted out a win. Yes they bowled out a win, but how may games do you think you can save with 145 runs on the board. All teams have suffered this type of defeat in there history. Take it from a Pak fan, English team on paper looks scary against any opposition, your bowling attacks is amazing(I thot I would never say that). From Broad & Jimmy to bowl, with that type of pace and swing, Pak just lucked out folks. with this batting line up, and yes spin. Need to rest your fear.

  • aa61761 on January 30, 2012, 13:42 GMT

    It looks like that Georgy Boy is against KP. Not scoring in two game is not such a big deal.

  • 5wombats on January 30, 2012, 13:37 GMT

    @PiyushD (January 30 2012, 09:22 AM GMT) - no mate. 4 + 4 does not make 3.

  • alimeer on January 30, 2012, 13:36 GMT

    Kevin Peterson is a good player against the Quicks.but Time and again he shows bad temprament against Quality spinners.Kevin Peterson Plays well when he plays positivly and agressivly.

  • charlesandrewbudge on January 30, 2012, 13:36 GMT

    @Rahulbose England do not "poach" players from anywhere. The vast majority of England's overseas-born players moved here at young ages or as adults of their own accord. People seem to have this ridiculous misconception that the ECB trek the globe stealing players they like the look of. I don't see you making similar comments about New Zealand, whose setup features several players born outside of NZ.

    I don't find Pietersen's lack of runs in the UAE particularly concerning, personally. I think it's somewhat premature to start calling for his head considering this series was preceeded by a very successful twelve months where he looked like the confident, exciting Pietersen of old. He's endured much, much longer runs of poor form and has been able to recover, and at 31 has got plenty of time left if he stays fit.

  • 5wombats on January 30, 2012, 13:35 GMT

    @dunger.bob on (January 30 2012, 08:38 AM GMT) - absolutely right. People talking about dropping KP ought to have their heads examined. He's worth having in just for the fear of him. KP a; " A nightmare wearing pads".. ha ha! We liked that!

  • Newbury_1 on January 30, 2012, 13:13 GMT

    What concerns me more about Pieterson is his lack of indifference and application when his obvious 'talents' as a player are needed!! Nobody disputes his ability, but for someone in his prime you would expect a little more....look at the way Ricky Ponting has applied himself recently both off the field and at the crease to refind his form for Australia. Come on KP we know you can do it, we want you to do it......the clock is ticking!!!

  • on January 30, 2012, 13:00 GMT

    Man what is the deal with these Indians? Seriously whatever team, whatever player, whatever topic all you get in the comment section is they bringing up some useless Indian connection... borders on over obsession. I am an Indian but seriously this just makes one of my fav sites a mess... but we reproduce like anything and have so called fans brigade that never had mannerisms in their vocab... my apologies to other nationals who might feel the same way!

  • on January 30, 2012, 12:40 GMT

    If he showed a bit of humility when he played the game he would be a much better player thats why cricket is such a leveler it has bought him back down to earth inc some of the other members of the english squad they are lucky they play for england where they are given everything they need. Unlike the poor players from the sub continent who cant even afford to buy shoes when they start off.

  • mrhamilton on January 30, 2012, 12:39 GMT

    well i think georgie boy dobell is jumping the gun a little, apart from a few media pundits talking which is what they need to do to justify their existence...I dont think peterson is going anywhere or going to be dropped for a very long time....until he gets to 33 and than stops playing well......he is going to be in this side a long time.....also the reality is peirterson learned his cricket in SA he should be playing for SA.....even if he had mongolian parents and had learned his cricket in england he would be accepted thats the british way...

  • 200ondebut on January 30, 2012, 12:39 GMT

    KP suffers from the tall poppy syndrome. Why else would there be a headline "low on runs and time " for someone who has two double hundreds, a daddy centruy and 5 fifties in the last 14 months? The only people who want him to go are the opposition! As other posters have indicated there are others who should be looking over their shoulders first!

  • StevieS on January 30, 2012, 12:38 GMT

    " Pietersen has a British parent, a British wife and a British child, but that seems not to be enough for some"

    What accent does he have? Suger coat it as much as you please but the fact is he is South African.

  • razzman786 on January 30, 2012, 12:34 GMT

    Please!!!Please!!!Please!!! don't blame any player, its the wicket and the best spin bowling of the world had impacted the batsman of both the side. No doubt, Pakistan has the best spin bowling attack right now and they know the wickets of UAE. Their batting and the pace bowling is not that strong compare to England. Also, playing in UAE is the game of pressure, which team takes and control the game.

    My suggestion to England camp, please don't change the current team, give them right advise how to stay on the wicket and play spin bowling on the front foot all the time and not on the back foot. Also, best shots to handle spin bowling stretch maximum and play sweep shots when possible. I am sure English batsman can face spin bowling and play with confidence. Droping any player from English team will not help at all, intead that will be damaging the career of the batsman.

    Let the same team play in 3rd test with confidence and play aggressive cricket with the run rate 3+ atleast.

  • Zahidsaltin on January 30, 2012, 12:10 GMT

    England has a football metality to cricket too. They should not try to make a cricket coach as powerful as one from football. Andy Flower should not be the person to tell that how many innings Pietersen is left with. KP is one of the great players of this era. His achievements speak for themselves. Every player has a bad form now and then and irrelevante people should avoid putting extra pressure on the player

  • on January 30, 2012, 12:04 GMT

    he was that horrible against spin bowling that i couldnt believe my eyes . he didnt even get the ordinary off spin balls of Ajmal. he quickly got on to front foot on every ball throwing his bat everywhere without even looking at where the ball is going .This is ridiculous. He seems to be ridiculously overrated batsman.

  • Potatis on January 30, 2012, 12:00 GMT

    @PiyushD, no, not the same. The series would be a whitewash, but England have played well, and been on top in the games, whereas India were never in the games and were totally thrashed.

  • on January 30, 2012, 11:55 GMT

    its a good time for pakistan. & slightly bad time for the english team !! i dont think so that these great batsmen should be blamed as they made this team to enjoy the number 1 position in the world ... I guess they should play with the same side and batsmen should show good temperament like Naseer Hussain of Bangladesh did ..

  • gudolerhum on January 30, 2012, 11:47 GMT

    It is ridiculous to even be discussing dropping KP because of what is a relatively brief run of poor scores. Looking at his track record he is one of the better English batsmen of the past three decades. If he has some difficulties at the moment, try to find out what is wrong and help him work them out. If Andy Flower fails to do this he, for all his other success, will have proved not to be as good a coach as he appears. AS PR-C says, too many potentially outstanding batsmen have been destroyed by indifferent management and David Gower's career was cut short by the personal selfishness of one man! There are other more glaring disappointments in the team at the moment than KP.

  • PACERONE on January 30, 2012, 11:45 GMT

    Some players are just overrated.Good thinking bowlers will always force Pietersen to play rash shots.IPL might be best for him.He moves across his wicket and sometimes down to play the ball to the onside,good bowlers should be able to prevent a batsman from making runs like that.He is also very nervous at the start..trying to get off the mark even if it is a suicide single.Some are calling for Broad to go in higher...they did the same to Flintoff,he did not produce in the same manner when that was done.England are short of replacement batsmen,so the failures will continue to play.

  • demon_bowler on January 30, 2012, 11:44 GMT

    "Despite living in a mobile, multi-cultural nation, there are some that resent the fact that he was born and raised overseas."

    Well, those "some" are contemptible, and I'm not sure why the author is giving space to their views. He certainly doesn't distance himself from them as strongly as he should, and he provides no evidence for a rift with Flower. Kevin's last century (180) was three tests ago. Singling him out for the batting failures in the last two tests is unfair, but also very unpredictable.

  • JG2704 on January 30, 2012, 11:31 GMT

    KP isn't looking great , but neither is Strauss , Morgan or Bell. We have one spare batsmen in Bopara - 2 if you include Davies. Does anyone think that any of these guys could come into a batting line up which has just been bowled out for less than 100 and less than 200 in 2 of the previous 3 inns. It's so much easier coming into a winning side than it is a struggling side. Personally I'd bring in Finn for Morgan. I have said that we should have had 5 bowlers from before the series started so this is not a kneejerk reaction. I feel an extra form bowler does more for the team than an out of form batsman. I'll also add that they are in danger of Broad or Anderson picking up a strain injury or burnout with just 2 pacers and we surely can't think of dropping any of our bowlers when it's our batsmen who have underperformed

  • JG2704 on January 30, 2012, 11:30 GMT

    @Sherley North Southworth on (January 30 2012, 07:58 AM GMT) - I'm what you would call a POM and I don't dislike him in the slightest. Other nations dislike him ,maybe partly because they realise what he is capable of when he is in the groove. Just like people (POMS) used to hate Warne,Mcgrath and Ponting probably for the same reason. Hatred is a form of flattery. I'd actually be interested to find out if any of my fellow Englishmen dislike him?@Rahulbose on (January 30 2012, 08:39 AM GMT) - If he is overhyped etc like you say then you should be pleased that we're poaching all these players from SA/Ireland. Morgan is hardly doing the biz

  • vishtej on January 30, 2012, 11:28 GMT

    He desperately needs a series against India.

  • Rosbo on January 30, 2012, 11:27 GMT

    Agree Pietersen was a great player. Trouble is whereas in his first four years he scored a century every 6 innings (great), in the last three full years and this one it is one every 13 innings which is not the frequency of a " great ". Trouble with having such an established batting line up is that there is no tried replacement. Morgan should be replaced by Bopara for third test.

  • KingofRedLions on January 30, 2012, 11:19 GMT

    Morgan is a more immediate concern. Or does he get special treatment because they don't want him to do what Joyce did?

  • on January 30, 2012, 11:17 GMT

    @CricketingStargazer. I must have either watched or listened to Pieterson batting over 20 times in tests and in nearly all but two of those occasions did he ever score at least a half century. I dont care whether his average is 50 or close to it the bottom line is his inflated average doesn't tell the full story. He is very inconsistent and when people/fans/commentators/media alike were saying he was so was great, i saw something else. I saw a player who was just really lucky.He's a fluke.If he keeps on playing eventually he will score another century. I have made comments about this before and i did so last year and the year before. Everytime the vultures circle he gets worried about his place and his reputation so he then does "just enough" to stay in the team.This happens time and time again. He'll score a hundred, media and fans will say "oooh he's so great" he will then flop in next 10 matches. Critics circle..cycle repeats. The guy bores me.He needs axing.

  • satish619chandar on January 30, 2012, 11:08 GMT

    "He has scored 26 international centuries and only Don Bradman scored more runs in his first 25 Tests." - What does this mean actually?? KP played 80 tests and 123 ODIs along with 33 T20I's.. Is it right to compare the first 25 match score alone? If so, Agarkar was the fastest to get 50 wickets in ODI and still he was never the same bowler again..

  • Garp on January 30, 2012, 11:06 GMT

    It isn't the fact that he hasn't scored or even that he's given away his wicket in his usual foolish approach when first coming out to bat, it is the fact that these professional cricketers acted like selfish pampered prima-donnas before this series and didn't properly prepare themselves. They had a 4-5 month break from test cricket and a 3-4 month break from any form of cricket and for a core group of players who've been involved in our setup for 10 years or more it is inexcusable for them to not have properly prepared for an overseas tour. I know this was one of the big issues when Peter Moores was in charge, these so-called superstars did not want a coach telling them how to prepare for a series, they instead state there perfectly capable of preparing themselves. Well we all see how that plan has worked out and Flower should step up and fine the lot of them for unprofessional-ism and failure to prepare for a series.

  • on January 30, 2012, 11:04 GMT

    Pietersen is the only Star in an otherwise dull team of journeymen. It is typical of the English media to kick a man when he is down, not only is he a great player his is a gentleman on and off the field. He is exactly the kind of player we love in India and would love to have him in our team pity he is South African.

  • PutMarshyOn on January 30, 2012, 10:57 GMT

    His record stands up against most. The only reason there is any debate is down to his awkward personality, he just is not one of nature's charmers. And who would the opposition prefer to see coming out at 4, Pietersen or A.N. Other? Personally I think his powers are just on the fade - his technique relies very much on flexible joints which just doesn't last - but there are plenty of runs left in him. No, I don't particularly like him but he can play a very watchable brand of cricket.

  • philipg33 on January 30, 2012, 10:55 GMT

    Stupid article!!! Pietersen is absolute class. without him Flower would not have won the ashes in Australia. Yes Cook and Trott were more prolific but Pietersen nailed the Aussies in the Second test likewise against India. If he is out of form then the other players need to carry him for a couple of tests till he is back. they are a unit. Just imagine if Ponting had been dropped for the India series. These sort of articles don't do anyone any good at all. To suggest KP ha swo enland innings left is ludicrous and to be honest I'm surprised cricinfo needed to publish this article at all.

  • on January 30, 2012, 10:52 GMT

    Cricinfo seems to over react whenever a player doesn't get a century. Seems to work though because everyone comes and posts about it including myself. Well done.

  • on January 30, 2012, 10:52 GMT

    @PiyushD Comparing England with India is like comparing apples with oranges in this instance. England has shown fight despite losing quite comprehensively. Also, unlike India the English have managed to put themselves in a winning position. Pakistan was just too good at the end of the day. On the contrary, the Indian team has shown no willingness nor appetite to struggle and fight after the chips were down. To make matters worse, the Indian team hasn't taken responsibility after humiliating losses. Instead, Indian statements after colossal losses reeked with arrogance and incompetence. The English players and staff have taken responsibility. Instead of ridiculing and finding excuses England has acknowledged the excellent performance of their opponents. This is why many cricket lovers are posing questions of appalling Indian sportsmanship. Losing and winning is part of the game. However, the manner in which the Indian team has thrown the towel in the ring is something to ponder upon.

  • Nutcutlet on January 30, 2012, 10:49 GMT

    Many people posting here have been quick to point out that KP's recent record (up to Dubai) was fine. That is not the entire point, IMO. He was well within his comfort zone smacking India's net bowlers around, and the same was true of the under-cooked Aussie attack of last winter .But now in UAE, it isn't just his miserable sequence of scores that must concern Flower, but the hapless figure that he has cut. Frankly, he hasn't looked like scoring a run. Whether KP knows it or not, we can all read his body language, and it has been self-evident that he has lost confidence and, it seems, any strength of purpose. England supporters have their hearts in their mouths just seeing him at the crease. That first run will be a run out opportunity to begin with and then there is the strong premonition that he will soon make a mistake, his bat looking as broad as a knitting needle. That he has no obvious replacement means that he will stay for now as EM makes way for RB. Tough times are here again!

  • kp289 on January 30, 2012, 10:44 GMT

    the problem about k.p is that he is always waiting for a crowd support and a big match...... but he ultimately delivers!!! but he needs to play well in the 3rd test so that england is safeguards its test no.1 status....!!

  • on January 30, 2012, 10:43 GMT

    I think it is a bit unfair to single out Pietersen. His record has been brilliant and he has played well in the games that mattered most to England - The Ashes and he was key in the Ashes changing hands. It will be sad if people get to him for his abrasive ways. He is a rare talent like Flintoff as someone has pointed out. But he probably needs more managing than a few others. But seriously England should be really worried about the fact that barring Cook and Trott most of the others have been patchy at best. I think Strauss may be a good captain, but he really has not made too many runs and Eoin Morgan is probably much better in the shorter version of the game than he is likely to be in test cricket. England"s bowling has been top class especially at home. But I think their batsmen will be tested in the sub continent where they might lose all their matches if they continue like this and may even be tested at home by the new look Aussie bowling attack in 2013, Not dominant NO 1!

  • on January 30, 2012, 10:36 GMT

    Whilst a bitter loss, England showed more fight in the 2nd test than India managed in the whole of their spineless 4-0 drubbing. England's loss hurt because they nearly won, that's a pain India could only dream about.

  • on January 30, 2012, 10:30 GMT

    Cricinfo ed - you should be embarrassed this article got published. Baseless speculation. We expect more from you.

  • axe_hay on January 30, 2012, 10:19 GMT

    Its time to rest KP and drop Eoin Morgan and get the talented James Taylor and Jimmy Hildreth. They have been consistent for the past few seasons and its time the selectors give them the nod .

  • on January 30, 2012, 10:18 GMT

    Aside from this article, has there been ANY indication KP's spot is in jeopardy?

  • chapathishot on January 30, 2012, 10:04 GMT

    There are some players whose head will be called by all and sundry if team performs badly the others will be forgotten easily.Hussey,Laxman and Pietersen belongs to the same category.What they have done earlier are easily forgotten and the performance of others are also easily forgotten.@ Paul Rone-Clarke : Where is talent in England they are importing it only (when Tremlet was injured two SouthAfricans and one Irish were considered)the current team has more expats than Canada or UAE

  • jinnx on January 30, 2012, 10:03 GMT

    @PiyushD sure only if England lose this match by 10wickets and Pakistan score 1000 runs in there first innings. Then its similar to India.

  • Ahtashamkhan on January 30, 2012, 9:52 GMT

    Dear Mr Dobell Since england lost the second test you are just trying to save them for no reason.i think this is your third article on English batsmen if a player cannot perform in alien conditions out side his comfort zone he is not a great player to me atleast all the best performances came from KP was in their comfort zone he was clueless again quality spin bowling we would expect that you should write an article about quality spin bowling rather than poor bating performance. you are totally bias.I can understand the pain after the lost of series but we cant do anything our three cricketers are in jail and thank for that its blessing in disguise really we dont need them any more...v r a talented nation and we have shown this.Please now stop writing about the past look into future... I am really sorry again about the pain u r going through....let me increase your pain little more. Pak won the test with 3-0 one day with 4-0 and T20 2-1 i give you one win since u r world champs t20

  • world.cricketer on January 30, 2012, 9:50 GMT

    pietersen is the player who lifted the team spirits with his debut and eng won the ashes getting confidence from pietersen. i think pietersen will come back even if he is dropped. he lacking some confidence coach should work on the batting position of KP.

  • Erebus26 on January 30, 2012, 9:44 GMT

    I would be more concerned about Eoin Morgan to be honest who has looked all at sea against quality bowling. KP has had a horrible tour but so have a few others.

  • valvolux on January 30, 2012, 9:42 GMT

    Georgy georgy georgy - there is so much wrong with your first few paragraphs. Firstly, people aren't circling for his blood because he was born/raised/taught how to play cricket in South Africa and is as English as biltong. If they were - surely Jonathon Trott would be even more so in the firing line? What's the difference? One is making runs. Secondly - you use the word British where you should've used English. This is England playing here - not England/wales/Scotland/Northern Ireland/anywhere else in Ireland cause its close enough/anyone who has dual citizenship even if they have never stepped foot onto british soil etc. etc. Having said that - at least KP has a go at being somewhat English - he wouldn't make an actor with his poor attempt at an English accent…but at least he is trying. He already has a big contract, a pop star wife, a house in Chelsea and a sleeve tattoo - the ingredients which make the English adore you. Success on the sporting field is beside the point.

  • andrew-schulz on January 30, 2012, 9:41 GMT

    England haven't won a global event. 20 over cricket doesn't count. And they play 20 over 'world cups' so often it is diminished even more if that were possible. And it is ridiculous to cite that win as a breaking of the drought of pathetic performances at world cups, which has since been heightened. As for why vultures circle around Pieterson, I can think of a few reasons (not justifying them, just pointing them out): He tells English journalists: 'It's your country, it's not mine.' He says of England: 'It's not my country, I just work there.' (Quoted in Ed Cowan's book). He shows no sign of wanting to bat through the pain and leaves the world cup early, seemingly treating it as a less important event than meaningless provincial 20 over stuff. And when Trott shows a similar lack of fortitude, it is not Pieterson who goes up to number 3. He has to stay in his pet number 4 position, thus doubly disrupting the batting line-up. Dungerbob , they are not that strong.

  • seand64 on January 30, 2012, 9:35 GMT

    Sorry George, you'll never convince me he's anything more than a good player. 19 test centuries, average below 50 and even lower at 1st class level. He'll never be classed as a great and maybe that's something more to do with his attitude, but one of his alleged early comments about not caring who he played for as long as he got to play test cricket certainly wouldn't have helped. I dunno, can't really put my finger on it, but i think he just rubs people the wrong way.

  • blenheimfs on January 30, 2012, 9:32 GMT

    My own attitude to KP has nothing to do with the fact that he isn't English but has everything to do with his crass attitude. This is a young man with an ego the size of the Millenium Dome who believes he is one of the greats of the game. Sorry, Kevin, it isn't for you to judge. You aren't and won't be all the time you have a hole in your water bottle. If the face he presents to the world is due to insecurity, he needs to find another way of dealing with it.

  • o-bomb on January 30, 2012, 9:25 GMT

    I think it would be tough on KP if he were to be dropped. Didn't he average over 70 in tests last year? Whilst he's had well documented problems against left arm spin in the past he's done well against other spinners until now. There's no reason to suggest he won't come back to form sooner rather than later. For the immediate future (the 3rd test) I'd bring in Bopara for Morgan. Morgan looks out of his depth against top class spinners so Bopara can't do any worse. It may be an obvious thing to say; but we need to identify players who can do well against spin if we're to succeed in Sri Lanka and in India. To this end I think we need another batting option for the tour to Sri Lanka.

  • criccritez on January 30, 2012, 9:24 GMT

    Come on Dobell, We heard this time and time, come up with some new excuses! My best advise for you is to just take the beat on your chin!

  • PiyushD on January 30, 2012, 9:22 GMT

    If England loose to Pakistan 3-0 will it be same as India lost 4-0 to Australia and England?

  • on January 30, 2012, 9:15 GMT

    There are a lot of similarities between Pietersen & Sehwag. Both can change the complexion of a game in a few overs. And, both seem to need periodical "shock treatment", to fire. In both cases, the shock treatment can be given only by dropping them for a series or two.

  • on January 30, 2012, 9:11 GMT

    Kevin Pietersen is the only english cricketing star, after flintof, those idiots never treated him fairly, if he had played for SA he could have be a much better player,

  • Munkeymomo on January 30, 2012, 9:02 GMT

    Hmm, I'd think Morgan should be more worried than Kapes.

  • on January 30, 2012, 9:02 GMT

    It does seem odd that Morgan's name is not mentioned. He had a comparatively quiet English summer and has not done anything of note this tour.

  • gullycover on January 30, 2012, 8:58 GMT

    truely dont think it will be counted as a failure on Flower's part if Pieterson will fail on rest of this tour and thus dropped. As you said, Andy has done wonders for this English team but a downfall of any player can not be blamed on a coach. May be Peterson has passed his shelflife.

  • LillianThomson on January 30, 2012, 8:57 GMT

    Everyone needs to calm down. England and Pakistan have success achieved through consistency and building settled teams. The last Test could easily have ended in an emphatic England victory. Andrew Flower should not be losing sleep about Pietersen and Bell but rather about Morgan and Strauss, neither of whom seems to have anything left to offer as a Test batsman.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 30, 2012, 8:52 GMT

    Even with no runs in these two Tests he has 1072 runs @ 56.4 in his last 14 Tests since the 2010/11 Ashes. That run includes two double centuries, a 175 and 5 fifties, as well as 8 scores of 3 or less! KP has always been one to make 3 low scores followed by a murderous big one. This is no more than a small glitch.

  • SirEngland on January 30, 2012, 8:49 GMT

    Botham's mother-in-law should replace KP!

  • on January 30, 2012, 8:43 GMT

    Not sure who would come in for Pietersen. Who is likely to be a better test batsman than him in an acceptable time frame of say 12-18 months. Certainly not Bopara, or one of these sloggers England tried out in the ODI series at the end of last season in England? I can't see anyone there. What England have done consistently well over the last 25 years is waste or mis-use talent, talent that would not have been wasted in most other countries. Just ask Ramrakash, Hick, Lewis, Tufnell, Caddick, Malcolm, Crawley, Key..... Let's not do that with Pietersen as well.

  • Rahulbose on January 30, 2012, 8:39 GMT

    He is a cocky, overhyped player. Only English fans like Dobell think of him as a great batsmen (Bradman really?). And Eng should stop poaching players from SA and Ireland.

  • dunger.bob on January 30, 2012, 8:38 GMT

    From this Aussies perspective its hard to imagine you could be seriously considering this. The bloke is a major headache if you don't nab him early and he's good enough to run away with the game in quick time. A nightmare wearing pads some days. .. So just how good is the batsman who would replace him? I knew you were strong, just didn't know you were that strong.

  • on January 30, 2012, 8:28 GMT

    May be ECB should push for another series against India to resurrect Pietersen's career.

  • Ali752 on January 30, 2012, 8:16 GMT

    But its only one series!!! give them all another chance in next series!!!!

  • anotherlostleader on January 30, 2012, 8:02 GMT

    Any talk of dropping Pietersen is ridiculous. Granted he has had a poor series but so have all the other batsman. He is still the most feared England player and has a test record at this point in his career that rivals that of all the modern great batsman. I think too many people forget that all batsman go through dips in form and if you look back at the careers of Steve Waugh, Brian Lara, Viv Richards and Sachin Tendulkar they all went through periods of struggle. He is human and I wish people could just embrace his confidence and belief rather than criticise him for it. We are lucky to have him and every other international side would play him and back him 100%. He will finish his career as one of England's best ever batsman if he is given the support he deserves.

  • on January 30, 2012, 7:58 GMT

    Strange that he is disliked by both Saffers and Poms! couldn't happen to a more deserving man!

  • Baundele on January 30, 2012, 7:44 GMT

    I completely agree with using the word 'vulture' for those that want KP's head. His recent test scores are 1, 14, 0, 2, 175, 63, 63, 29, 202*, 1, 85, 72. So, except from these two tests he has been doing an excellent job. In these two tests against Pakistan all the English players have sucked. People that use the excuse of these two tests to call for KP's head should not be allowed to come close to any form of cricket.

  • johnathonjosephs on January 30, 2012, 7:42 GMT

    Why is Pieterson being singled out? None of the English batsman has stood up, so why single Pieterson out?

  • wadesert on January 30, 2012, 7:39 GMT

    I dont think only Pietersen is not among runs whole middle order is struggling even A struss is not performing ......It looks like they really dont enjoy playing turning deliveries.....

  • on January 30, 2012, 7:24 GMT

    i really love him plz don't drop him it is request to the team management .i am saying because Pakistan can win the third test easily,it will be really hard for the Pakistan bowlers to get rid of someone else

  • on January 30, 2012, 7:22 GMT

    Much as I feel frustrated at his form and approach to batting on this tour (his failures didn't even surprise, he looks like a walking wicket), he should of course be part of England's plans long into the future. Being dropped for one or two tests may do him good however.

  • KarachiKid on January 30, 2012, 7:19 GMT

    I am surprised that English management and/or fans are already looking for heads - that proven batsmen of caliber of Peitersen, Bell and Struass are under pressure. This is a shame. Its only two or three matches that they have failed. But look at their records, sustained over many many years and none of them are like 35+ (like Laxman, Dravid and Tendulkar). I dont think showing this kind of impatience will do any good to the approach and mentality of these fine cricketers or English cricket. Pietersen is not weak against spin either. I think the thing is that Saeed Ajmal is relatively unknown and has not been figured out yet. I think in another two years, Saeed Ajmal's record would not be as good as it stands today 100 wickets in 19 matches. Stats like these are unsustainable. Its just pure bad luck that English team came accross this upward mobile and united Pakistan team on turning tracks. I have my strong vote for the current English batting lineup, encluding Morgan.

  • FatBoysCanBat on January 30, 2012, 7:19 GMT

    Perhaps it was a slow news day for cricinfo because this article is just speculation about what might happen should Pietersen not make runs in the next Test. Since the beginning of the Ashes Pietersen has scored 1072 runs @ 56.42 - I'm pretty sure any team in world cricket would be stoked to have a player making runs like that. Enough said.

  • on January 30, 2012, 7:16 GMT

    I think the only reason Pietersen is constantly criticised is because he should be averaging 10 runs more. He's a great player and really shouldn't be worried about his place, but he should be doing so much more. He should be the kind of guy that teams worry about coming in.

  • robheinen on January 30, 2012, 7:16 GMT

    There's only one thing wrong with Kevin Pietersen: He's uncapable of rising above himself. His ego's simply too big. That's what prevents him from being a real star; that's what irritates people. This is nmot the first time I'm stating this, however it's not been taken to heart which is a shame for a technically outstanding performer.

  • on January 30, 2012, 7:06 GMT

    kevin is a unique player who has capable of threatening the fast or spin bowler in world cricket. i watched his cricket against spin both best bowler were worried, i mean shane warne and murali. when he is settled every bowler knew that he change the entire game. he is a match winner he always rotating strike that good for any format of cricket. watch his 2007 ashes he played brilliantly in back put. everyone think that he's strong only in leg side based on the pitch and bowling condition only he plays like that. otherwise he's good in off side and also very good straight drive player.after pietersen arrive make manythings done by english cricket everyone knew that and also in 20-20.

  • SamRoy on January 30, 2012, 6:58 GMT

    To drop Pietersen will be the greatest mistake English selectors can ever do. He is the only batsmen who can be great. Nobody will ever say again that Bell is great after showing his greatness against Ajmal :). He is very stylish yes, very timid as well. Trott is a bit like Younis Khan in his prime. Lot of runs but extremely boring to watch. Exact opposite of say Jayawardene or Laxman or Inzamam (in their primes). Pietersen is the most attractive and aggressive stroke player for England since David Gower. Drop him and it will be the beginning of England's downfall. He is a lot better than the overhyped Bopara and Morgan.

  • Rahul_78 on January 30, 2012, 6:48 GMT

    Mr.Ego has been deprived of his main diet of importance and stardom in recent times since English team is doing so well with everyone contributing. Agree with Mr.George that Flower hasn't been able to handle KP well but the blame should lie with KP in this case as a coach is appointed to take care of entire team and not feed and bolster an ego of an individual. I was very surprise to hear some talk in the past that KP is not performing to his best cause there are empty seats in UAE stadiums and no one to appreciate and applaud his cricket, he should stick to playing only home games in that case. Bottom line is not only him but Bell and Morgan have not come to terms with Ajmal and Rehman. They are not sure which way and how much the ball is going to turn in Ajmals case and sharp turn extracted by Rehman from flatter trajectory. KP has just tried to take a big stride and smother the spin of the wicket which is risky and deprives batsmen of scoring opportunity.It ll only get difficult..

  • Mourinho7 on January 30, 2012, 6:46 GMT

    George I think you're jumping the gun a bit in claiming that KP has limited time left in the side. 80 Tests, an average at a clip under 50 and two double tons as well as a smattering of 50's a mere matter of two matches ago doesn't equate to having his position in the team under threat.

    Ricky Ponting just went through two years without even scoring a century, and yet was retained. Granted, the selection policies are somewhat different in each country, but the point stands. As a senior member of this England side, no serious questions will be asked about his place unless he fails dismally for another two series.

  • on January 30, 2012, 6:45 GMT

    if you want to drop Pieterson after 2 test matches what does it say about Australia

    why would you have not advocated Ponting, Clarke Hussey and Haddin to be forcibly removed from selection over the last 2 years prior to this summer?????????????????????

    you cant expect to have it both ways

  • satish619chandar on January 30, 2012, 6:41 GMT

    Kp had one good series against the worst attack in their worst combination.. Apart from that, he never had anything of notice last couple of years.. A good attacking player with lots and lots of ego should have scored much better.. Provided England has none of backups who can play spin better, his place ll be secured atleast against subcontinent teams..

  • vishal_hari on January 30, 2012, 6:30 GMT

    Though KP has been a complex and sometimes infuriating character throughout his international career, one thing which cannot be denied is his ability to bounce back and answer the critics in the best manner possible - through big scores! He now faces a challenge where he has to not only show humility but also temperament and technique. These are the tests of a batsman - how they adapt in challenging environments and perform for the team. How KP adapts and performs will be a much better indicator of how great a player he is (and can become) than his record of performance whilst he is in his comfort zone.

  • anver777 on January 30, 2012, 6:23 GMT

    SOS !!!!!!! not a good sign for KP............ need a solid batting knock in the next test & get his confidence back !!!!!!

  • on January 30, 2012, 6:04 GMT

    Every great player had ups and downs.Don't worry Kevin just watch the videos of how u used to play before and get back to basics. U will be fine Kevin keep things very basic.

  • rohanbala on January 30, 2012, 6:01 GMT

    Kevin Pietersen's future appears to be nearing the end. He looks totally out of sorts and he will be a big embarrassment to the team if he is not dropped.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • rohanbala on January 30, 2012, 6:01 GMT

    Kevin Pietersen's future appears to be nearing the end. He looks totally out of sorts and he will be a big embarrassment to the team if he is not dropped.

  • on January 30, 2012, 6:04 GMT

    Every great player had ups and downs.Don't worry Kevin just watch the videos of how u used to play before and get back to basics. U will be fine Kevin keep things very basic.

  • anver777 on January 30, 2012, 6:23 GMT

    SOS !!!!!!! not a good sign for KP............ need a solid batting knock in the next test & get his confidence back !!!!!!

  • vishal_hari on January 30, 2012, 6:30 GMT

    Though KP has been a complex and sometimes infuriating character throughout his international career, one thing which cannot be denied is his ability to bounce back and answer the critics in the best manner possible - through big scores! He now faces a challenge where he has to not only show humility but also temperament and technique. These are the tests of a batsman - how they adapt in challenging environments and perform for the team. How KP adapts and performs will be a much better indicator of how great a player he is (and can become) than his record of performance whilst he is in his comfort zone.

  • satish619chandar on January 30, 2012, 6:41 GMT

    Kp had one good series against the worst attack in their worst combination.. Apart from that, he never had anything of notice last couple of years.. A good attacking player with lots and lots of ego should have scored much better.. Provided England has none of backups who can play spin better, his place ll be secured atleast against subcontinent teams..

  • on January 30, 2012, 6:45 GMT

    if you want to drop Pieterson after 2 test matches what does it say about Australia

    why would you have not advocated Ponting, Clarke Hussey and Haddin to be forcibly removed from selection over the last 2 years prior to this summer?????????????????????

    you cant expect to have it both ways

  • Mourinho7 on January 30, 2012, 6:46 GMT

    George I think you're jumping the gun a bit in claiming that KP has limited time left in the side. 80 Tests, an average at a clip under 50 and two double tons as well as a smattering of 50's a mere matter of two matches ago doesn't equate to having his position in the team under threat.

    Ricky Ponting just went through two years without even scoring a century, and yet was retained. Granted, the selection policies are somewhat different in each country, but the point stands. As a senior member of this England side, no serious questions will be asked about his place unless he fails dismally for another two series.

  • Rahul_78 on January 30, 2012, 6:48 GMT

    Mr.Ego has been deprived of his main diet of importance and stardom in recent times since English team is doing so well with everyone contributing. Agree with Mr.George that Flower hasn't been able to handle KP well but the blame should lie with KP in this case as a coach is appointed to take care of entire team and not feed and bolster an ego of an individual. I was very surprise to hear some talk in the past that KP is not performing to his best cause there are empty seats in UAE stadiums and no one to appreciate and applaud his cricket, he should stick to playing only home games in that case. Bottom line is not only him but Bell and Morgan have not come to terms with Ajmal and Rehman. They are not sure which way and how much the ball is going to turn in Ajmals case and sharp turn extracted by Rehman from flatter trajectory. KP has just tried to take a big stride and smother the spin of the wicket which is risky and deprives batsmen of scoring opportunity.It ll only get difficult..

  • SamRoy on January 30, 2012, 6:58 GMT

    To drop Pietersen will be the greatest mistake English selectors can ever do. He is the only batsmen who can be great. Nobody will ever say again that Bell is great after showing his greatness against Ajmal :). He is very stylish yes, very timid as well. Trott is a bit like Younis Khan in his prime. Lot of runs but extremely boring to watch. Exact opposite of say Jayawardene or Laxman or Inzamam (in their primes). Pietersen is the most attractive and aggressive stroke player for England since David Gower. Drop him and it will be the beginning of England's downfall. He is a lot better than the overhyped Bopara and Morgan.

  • on January 30, 2012, 7:06 GMT

    kevin is a unique player who has capable of threatening the fast or spin bowler in world cricket. i watched his cricket against spin both best bowler were worried, i mean shane warne and murali. when he is settled every bowler knew that he change the entire game. he is a match winner he always rotating strike that good for any format of cricket. watch his 2007 ashes he played brilliantly in back put. everyone think that he's strong only in leg side based on the pitch and bowling condition only he plays like that. otherwise he's good in off side and also very good straight drive player.after pietersen arrive make manythings done by english cricket everyone knew that and also in 20-20.