Kevin Pietersen's 100th Test

'I'm so lucky and so proud' - Pietersen

There have been fall-outs and controversies along the way, but Kevin Pietersen has been a central part of one of the most successful periods of English cricket

George Dobell in Brisbane

November 19, 2013

Comments: 63 | Text size: A | A

"A great journey" was how Kevin Pietersen reflected upon his career so far. It seems an apt description for the man who will, all being well, become the tenth England player to earn his 100th Test cap when the first Ashes Test begins in Brisbane on Thursday.

For various reasons, Pietersen has not always enjoyed the praise his success as a cricketer warrants. Perhaps, as he suggested, it is the belief of some that England is his adopted country - he is actually a dual-national that dilutes the praise; perhaps it is the perception of him as arrogant or brash; perhaps he is seen as selfish or a mercenary. Maybe, in a nation that was, until recently, starved of sporting success for a long time, Pietersen's single-minded nature struck a discordant chord.

But what few could doubt is that he had played a starring role in one of the finest chapters in the history of English cricket. With Pietersen in the side, England have won the Ashes regularly - something that seemed almost impossible not so long ago - they have won their first global limited-overs trophy - the World T20 in 2010 - they have won a Test series in India and risen, albeit briefly, to the top of the rankings in all three formats of the game .

It is no coincidence that Pietersen's career has coincided with a period of such success. He was the Man of the Tournament in that 2010 success, he was the man who supplied the match-defining century when England won back the Ashes at The Oval in 2005 and, over the years, he has played some of the greatest Test innings of the era; three of them in 2012 alone. Only one England player in history - Alastair Cook - has scored more than his 23 Test centuries and only four have scored more than his 7,887 Tests runs.

We ask a great deal of our sporting heroes. We expect them to be lions on the pitch and kittens off it. While Pietersen has never been involved in a serious case of dissent, while no-one denies his work-ethic or professional attitude to fitness and while he has never been involved in some of the off-pitch episodes that blighted the careers of Andrew Flintoff and Sir Ian Botham, he has attracted some disproportionately fierce criticism from the media.

Positive signs for Prior

  • Matt Prior came through another tough training session to further boost his chances of playing in the first Test starting on Thursday.
  • Prior, who sustained a calf tear less than two weeks ago, suffered no ill effects after his training on Monday and was able to take some outstanding catches during a lengthy session on Tuesday to suggest he has a good chance of being fit to play in Brisbane.

"I call it confidence; you guys call it arrogance because it makes for a better headline," Pietersen said at the Gabba on Tuesday. "I've got to be confident in my ability. Clearly as a South African coming into England I had to really fight some tough battles and I had to be single minded in achieving what I had to try and achieve.

"A lot of great sportsman have that little bit of something to them that makes them try to be the best and want to be the best and wake up every single day wanting to improve. It doesn't get documented how much I train, or how hard I train away from the game where no-one sees what I do."

There have, of course, been some notable bumps in the road. Apart from the inevitable fluctuations in form, there was the clash with Peter Moores which cost both men their jobs and saw Pietersen stripped of the captaincy and there was 'text-gate,' which saw Pietersen dropped from the Test side for the only time in his career. If the latter was silly - and probably no more than that - the former was an attempt, albeit a clumsy and possibly ill-judged attempt, to improve the fortunes of the England team. Perhaps, as times passes, neither incident appears quite so Machiavellian as it did at the time. Clumsy, yes; Machiavellian, no.

Nor is Pietersen blameless for some of the negative press. There have been times when his relationship with the media has been frosty in the extreme and times - at Nottinghamshire, Hampshire and England - when he appeared ambivalent about his team-mates and team. It is not so long ago that, when asked about the performance of Chris Wood, the Hampshire seamer with whom he had just played a game, he replied "Sorry, which one is Wood?"

Kevin Pietersen prepares for his 100th Test, Brisbane, November 19, 2013
Kevin Pietersen: 'Do you ever look at things and think why you've done things? We all make mistakes' © Getty Images

Pietersen, in an open, engaging and often lighthearted press conference, admitted he had made mistakes, but suggested that, as he had matured, that he had learned from the experiences and that he was now as happy and settled as he has been at any stage of his career.

"We all make mistakes," he said when asked about the incident involving messages about Andrew Strauss. "Do you ever look at things and think why you've done things? We all make mistakes. You learn from the ups. You learn from the downs. I had lunch with Strauss yesterday.

"We're all getting on really well within the team. We're all winning together, we've played a lot of cricket together. These things happen. You have it in all walks of life. You have ups; you have downs. We're a really good bunch at the moment. We're going really well. I'm so lucky and so proud to be where I am."

Some credit is due to Andy Flower, Cook and the rest of the England management, too. There were times during the texting incident when it seemed the attitude of the England management was unnecessarily punitive. But, 18 months or so later, Pietersen has been successfully 'reintegrated' into the team and, according to all reports, is the model professional on and off the pitch. The help and encouragement he has given younger players on this tour has been admirable.

History tends to strip its victims to the bone. Characters become caricatures and lives are summed up by a single incident. So Henry VIII is distilled into the king who beheaded his wives, Churchill is distilled into a cigar-chomping war leader and John Prescott becomes the man who thumped a member of the public. The subtleties and contrasts that make any individual tend to get lost.

So how will Pietersen be remembered? Will he, like Tony Grieg or Hansie Cronje, be remembered more for his off-pitch influence, or will he be remembered as England's finest batsman since Hutton, Hammond and Hobbs?

Hopefully it will be his exploits on the pitch that escape time's filter. Few, very few, players inspire the joy and excitement of Pietersen in full flow and it seems petty to focus on the flaws when the good qualities are so overwhelming. Players should be judged on their performance on the pitch, not on their relationship with the media.

The story isn't over, either. Pietersen's hunger for the game remains and there are a couple of notable ambitions yet to fulfil. It now seems he will play until 2016 at least.

"With this side, we've won everything," Pietersen said. "We've won a Twenty20 World Cup, Ashes home and away and we've won in India.

"The World Cup 2015 is something I'd love to have a go at with England. And I've got home and away hundreds against each major nation, apart from South Africa. I think our tour to South Africa is in 2015-16. So if the old man can survive until then, I'd like to get there and I'd like to reach 10,000 Test runs.

"I know there's been a lot of people talking about my career and saying that I'm probably going to finish at the end of this series. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but it's my opinion that I'll be playing for a while yet. I'm loving playing with this side."

The feelings would now appear to be a mutual. Just as Pietersen cannot succeed without the support of his team-mates, so they have come to accept that they are stronger for his presence. Teams don't need to be affectionate towards one another; they just need to respect each other.

The England team, like the England spectators and the England media, will miss Pietersen when he is gone. He may, at times, be frustrating; he may, at times, be infuriating, and he has, of course, made mistakes. But he is a great batsman and such players come along very, very rarely. To see him express those talents on one of the biggest stages of all - an Ashes series - should be a joy.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by rohanblue on (November 20, 2013, 13:12 GMT)

england is my second fav team after india, reasons are kevin pietersen, great greame swanny, england should win this ashes , best of luck england, Go britishers...........

Posted by Arrow011 on (November 20, 2013, 12:39 GMT)

I would rate KP as the world's best batsman now, after the retirement of Sachin. KP is the greatest cricketer to be playing now. Now, we must watch him more as there is very little classy players nowadays.

Posted by Leggie on (November 20, 2013, 9:27 GMT)

I distinctly remember his debut Test, and when I saw those back foot cover drives, was immediately reminded of my all-time-favourite Sachin. It was on that day that I thought that if at all there was one person who can match or exceed Sachin, it has to be Kevin Pieterson. As with the little master, his walk to the crease brings in a buzz, and we all know that till he gets out, there is always a possibility of something special. Congrats on the 100th Test KP. I'm sure there are lot more great Test matches to come. From the bottom of my heart, I wish KP a long & fruitful career.

Posted by jb633 on (November 20, 2013, 8:46 GMT)

@2nd_slip, well I can only talk from personal experience and we fared very well in our rugby tour of cape town and 50/50 on our schools tour of Durban (cricket related). I agree SA has a good schools structure but so does England now. Our sport has developed hugely in the last ten years, I would grant that SA is ahead of the cricket side by some way and marginally ahead of the rugby side. However in pretty much all other sports we compete at the top level pretty well. It's not like S can really complain either because Imran Tahir is of Pakistani origin and it's not like England have actively gone scouting players of South African heritage. The EU laws we are tied to will always allow for those with some parental heritage in the UK to work here. For anyone that wants to look beyond ridiculous arguments of poaching look up the EU Kolpak laws and you will see why these players can play for England. England is a diverse place, get over it.

Posted by cricket.kudos on (November 20, 2013, 8:23 GMT)

KP is one of the greats of the game - Viv revolutionized batting - Sehwag gave it momentum and KP perfected it - at his best he is one of the best - can play the game as per the games momentum whether it is survival last test of ashes 2005 or blasting the opposition T20 WC 2010 - thanks for the entertainment KP. Off the field does not effect records and that is what counts - no one remembers Hobbs for his personality but his achievements - Russell Crowe did not win the oscar for misbehaving with a journalist but that does not mean he is an average actor. Cheers KP and thanks for the entertainment and keep it going

Posted by RednWhiteArmy on (November 20, 2013, 8:10 GMT)

England has been lucky to have KP & KP has been lucky to have the world famous Barmy Army behind him.

Posted by Cricitfan on (November 20, 2013, 6:07 GMT)

I think the South Africa / England moan is pretty irrelevant. We live in a global environment where people can choose where they live and which team they play for. The UK attracts people from all over the world to go and live there and has more than 4 million foreign residents - should they not be allowed to play sport for the country they have chosen to make their lives in? To argue that he played cricket at school in South Africa so should not play for England is slightly ridiculous.

Posted by   on (November 20, 2013, 5:25 GMT)

I always used to copy his batting style, with out a doubt he is the best batsmen who have made debut in last 10 years

Posted by GRVJPR on (November 20, 2013, 5:14 GMT)

KP is just an ordinary player who every know and then plays a good inning, like one in Mumbai. There are maximum 10 such innings or even less, and that doesn't make any one great. People must understand that playing "Swithc Hit" and 'Dilscoops" aren't the parameters to judge greatness.

Posted by RodStark on (November 20, 2013, 4:10 GMT)

I always wonder what might have happened if KP had won his battle with Peter Moores and remained as captain. I think he was doing a really good job and it seemed to be inspiring him to bat even better. He is the type of perfectionist who would have made it his goal to become the best captain ever. We've done great under Strauss and then Cook, and of course we might not have got Flower as coach, but it would have been very interesting at aleast.

Posted by   on (November 20, 2013, 0:45 GMT)

Front-Foot-Lunge said:

"... he (KP) has flogged the greatest bowlers out of the stadium and done more of the same to every other opposition bowler he's come across. He's a genius player, a perfect number 4 and will go down in history as one of most special players of the sport..."

Absolutely right. Take a bow, South Africa. Well done, for producing such great players,

India's greatest contribution to English cricket was the late Ranjtsinghji. And, it is nice to see that India has named their premier domestic tournament (the major funnel for tapping their national players) after Ranji. Indians are proud of Ranji, the same way S.A can be proud of KP.

Posted by Manush on (November 19, 2013, 23:59 GMT)

I have always maintained that in the current Cricketing world he is one of the best players, a treat to watch when he gets going, the way he plays pace and spin shows his skill and greatness.He is the another version Viv.Richards and deserve praise and not criticism . and I wish he continues without injury,as along as he could, which is the main factor for England's success, without which they will be in the lower side of the ICC Rankings. Good Luck KP.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 23:27 GMT)

I'm not South African, but I believe they have every right to feel aggrieved at this guy playing 100 tests for another nation. Imagine if Jacques Kallis had been born in England, brought up and schooled in England, learned to play cricket in England and then moved to South Africa, purely (by his own admission) to play ... The British tabloids would be constantly whinging about it and the Barmy Army would be singing embittered songs about it.

Posted by 2nd_Slip on (November 19, 2013, 21:12 GMT)

@jb633- funny statement you make there pal. I reside in Durban, South Africa and happen to have went to the same high school(Maritzburg College) that KP went to in Pietermaritzburg, SA. I played cricket,rugby aswell as football which are the three most followed sports in this coutry and we had allot of touring cricket and rugby schools(Eng U19 included) to play our school during my school days and tell you what, we thrashed almost all of them. SA schools rugby and cricket is probably the most competitive, tough and physical amongst the nations that play these sport. And this is quite evident at senior level too with the Springboks being second only to NZ in rugby and the Proteas being the best in cricket!! PS love KP, wish him all the best very good batsman, one of a few sportsmen who talks the talk and walks the walk.

Posted by Alexk400 on (November 19, 2013, 20:50 GMT)

England won in India. Thats big achievement. Winning in mumbai because of KP sealed it. KP special cricketer like sehwag , you need kids glove when you treat them. Emotional people. For a white guy KP is emotional. :)

Posted by CodandChips on (November 19, 2013, 20:16 GMT)

Why do people ignore the fact that when KP arrived in England with his ENGLISH mother and his ENGLISH passport, he was a bowler who batted a bit. Only playing at Notts transformed him into a batsman.

Now I'm not claiming that KP is English talent. But he is far frombeing just a South African product.

Posted by jb633 on (November 19, 2013, 19:26 GMT)

@majhut, and your experience of English school sport and South African school sport is what exactly. I have toured SA as a schools cricketer and rugby player, we pretty much battered their rugby sides and won as much as we lost with their cricket sides. Our olympic gold medal tally will smash the South African equivalent and our rugby side is the only side to beat the all blacks in the last 15 games. South Africa are a very good cricket side and have a good school structure but it is by no means streets ahead of that in England. England had a dreadful structure in most sports throughout the 90's but they seem to have been addressed largely. People love to have a go at the English regarding sport, because we still hold an image of the losers from the 90's. However if you look at all our recent sporting success it's difficult to criticise the structure that brings these people success.

Posted by thekaz on (November 19, 2013, 18:35 GMT)

I think some people are missing the point. Whilst KP's stats aren't as good as they were and his isn't as consistent as Cook, its his ability to do extraordinary things with the bat in hand that makes him a great. As Michael Holding said on commentary very recently, 'very few players since Sir Viv have dominated opponents like KP can' surely the highest compliment. His ability to take opposition teams apart over the last 8 years in Test match cricket, is unmatched by anybody in my opinion. His Hundreds against SA and away in India are two of the best hundreds ive ever seen. Some people will only realize how great KP is until hes gone.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (November 19, 2013, 18:30 GMT)

With English parentage and having paid all of his taxes in this country as a working adult, KP is a proud Englishman and he is admired by many. The amount of jealousy he attracts can be astounding. There again, he has flogged the greatest bowlers out of the stadium and done more of the same to every other opposition bowler he's come across. He's a genius player, a perfect number 4 and will go down in history as one of most special players of the sport.

Posted by Bonehead_maz on (November 19, 2013, 18:21 GMT)

Best batsman for England since Peter May. You can have your Cooks Trotts and Bells, this is the guy who scares us and will be the most celebrated wicket.

Posted by CodandChips on (November 19, 2013, 17:26 GMT)

Amazing to think that 3 modern greats, Cook, Pietersen and Clarke will celebrate their hundredth tests in the ashes. Good luck to them.

Posted by vatsap on (November 19, 2013, 16:23 GMT)

England is so incredibly lucky to have KP with them. If he was an Indian cricketer, he would be the fans favorite. England's X-Factor is plainly due to his presence in the team. Would love to see him go on, there is always happening when he is on the crease. Congratulations to him on his 100th.

Posted by mahjut on (November 19, 2013, 15:50 GMT)

@maximum6 again. I do agree to a point that the UK community is influenced by 'tall poppy syndrome' - even that it can occasionally be negative - but I have always seen it as an inevitable (and thankful) conclusion of a "zero-sum game".

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (November 19, 2013, 15:37 GMT)

Another solid export from us Saffas.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 15:35 GMT)

D'Oliveara, Tony Greig, and now Kevin Pieterson...Great batsmen, indeed. Take a bow... South Africa!

Posted by mahjut on (November 19, 2013, 15:34 GMT)

@maximum6 ... I don't remember KPs 149 vs SA (and I watched almost every ball) because Eng still couldn't win that game but I do remember another Peterson having a good game. That's probably because I always like the beginnings and endings of innings ... unlike another poster (the featured one) I rarely remember KP or those bats hiding in the middle order (not to say I can't appreciate the odd great innings - often by a # 4, 5 or 6 bat like KP, Flower, Bell, Laxman, Kohli, ABDV...)

a Smith, Hayden or an aggressive late order bat like Prior or Gilly for me any day.

The thing about revering excellence is ... it has to be clear - talk of greatness should be backed by more than just a gut feeling (or an occasional innings with a new, semi-legal shot of the day) - or it is simply a matter of disenfranchising the majority, the "nobodies" as you put it, the daily grinders who create the pedestal these guys sit on.

the stats just don't show the KP you describe. Viv, he is not

Posted by mahjut on (November 19, 2013, 14:53 GMT)

ok, now that I've read the article in its entirety (and it didn't take the whole two hours since my last comment) I have a couple more responses. First, I think as a South African coming to England you have a distinct advantage as a sportsman because sport is a much more competitive at a much younger age in SA. Secondly, I think even the harshest critics (and I enjoy being one of them) will remember KP for more than just one thing: I will always give him the credit he deserves for his contribution in the 2005 ashes ... even if I spend more time associating him with his petulant, dishonest exit from SA, His alienation of his team-mates, his snubbing of Strauss in the press conference and his ability to get praise like "best bat since Hutton" or "genius" when his stats (particularly those of '100+ in wins' or 'win/loss ration') show him to be a jot inferior to all Strauss, Trott, Bell and Cook (including 'won away' games - A Cook is best) - so the "game-changer" really doesn't hold up

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 14:39 GMT)

Very surprising to see a "balanced" article about KP. Nothing balanced about the bloke. KP is one in the line of batting greats, one who has his own very clear identity, he is not an attacking batsmen, he is a destroyer very much in Sir Viv's league. The confidence, the long strides down the wicket to intimidate bowlers, KP is a class apart. He has maintained his own style of batting throughout going through ups and downs, very much a batting version of Botham. If I were English I would celebrate KP as the next great hope of test cricket, but then there are the English...oh the English.....

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 14:02 GMT)

KP has the talent to be a batting great but has fallen some way short of this, world class no doubt but his arrogance has mean't despite some great innings he is no more than world class and weighed against this is the trouble he has caused in the dressing room where ever he has played!

Give me a Ian Bell EVERY TIME.

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (November 19, 2013, 13:26 GMT)

...It is little wonder then KP has this relationship with Indians. They know how to accept in full and smile with the good times and not 'hate' excellence. In England though we have to take excellence down and exalt mediocrity and nothingnesss. The grey is standard, and nobodies 'somebodies'. Colour can be tolerated only in very small amounts. I learnt cricket here and going through the system as far as I went, it was obvious the medium paced length and line bowler was king. Why? Because he did not try anything. I remember G. Chappell saying how in Australia they did not worry about length and line but more about doing something with the ball. They had just won their 3rd series and Warne had had his first spectacular series. He did something with the ball. KP does something too-it is outrageous and not quite 'right''-mostly because he does not just pat the ball back. He scares some because he exceeds normal limitations, like Viv did. He is true great but only some will allow it.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 13:24 GMT)

KP is a terrific cricketer. I still remember when he burst into international cricket in 2004/05 in the One-Day series between England and SA in SA. He batted brilliantly and scored 2 hundreds, I think. He was then picked for the Ashes and ended up as the leading run-scorer for the series; the 158 at The Oval was a truly great innings. He has had ups and downs since then, but overall, I would say he has done very well as a batsman. He has struggled to succeed in the subcontinent but scored a magnificent 186 in India last year - that century probably turned things in England's favor in the series. Hope to see more of his classy batting in the next few years.

Posted by mtfb on (November 19, 2013, 13:21 GMT)

Pieterson is so like Botham. Arrogant, boorish and not half as good as he thinks he is. The England camp does not need his disruptive influence.

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (November 19, 2013, 13:15 GMT)

Once again we see the grudging attitude so typical of English writing on view for another airing of tepid appreciation of one of our own. Maybe it is what is required-a sense of discord and disapproval. I read an article by Michael Vaughan yesterday. It was shorn of this standard ambivalence and fulsome in its praise of KP, and finished saying he liked 'characters' who are a bit different. I agreed with him on the fact that KP could lay claim to being one of our greatest,maybe even greatest,batsmen ever. To me he is our Viv, surely and spectacularly the best batsman I have seen or had seen till KP came along. He broke the rules as it were. KP does too.That 149 v South Africa showed how little he cared for the cannons of orthodox batting. Still in a country where some would say Strauss was South African and should have played for them, nothing need surprise me. I guess the sun just does not shine enough here for anything but cussed and grudging acceptance of excellence.KP is too good

Posted by FreddyForPrimeMinister on (November 19, 2013, 13:00 GMT)

At last a well-balanced and positive article about KP. The guy has made mistakes for sure but his talent, hard work, dedication and thrilling batsmanship should be applauded by all. The constant harping about his SA heritage is boring and unwarranted. Pietersen CHOSE to live and work in England; why therefore should he be criticised for not being born here, something he clearly had choice over! His dedication to playing for England can never be questioned, despite his request to retire from ODI's to prolong his career in Tests and T20's. Contrast that with footballers that we revere like Shearer and Scholes, who retired from playing for England to prolong their club career! His "arrogance" never shows in interviews after games when his first comment is always to praise his teammates and to respect the opposition.

If he didn't speak with a SA accent, the criticism would disappear. KP is a diamond who should be appreciated because his loss when he does finally retire will be sorely felt

Posted by mahjut on (November 19, 2013, 12:39 GMT)

I have cooled to KP over the years but he is, when all is said and done, a sub-50 average man in an era when that is simply average. Here's my take on ""But what few could doubt is that he had played a starring role in one of the finest chapters in the history of English cricket""

- this to me is fine, but analogous with a description of Dolph Lundgren in 'the expendables': "... what few could doubt is that he had played a starring role in one of the finest chapters in the history of action movie making".

Posted by GeoffreysMother on (November 19, 2013, 12:35 GMT)

Nice article George. One of the best and most balanced I have read on our Kevin. I'm not sure what some of the Aussie media are trying to do - but on past performance it is only likely to make him more dangerous. It is good to hear that he intends to play on at least till the S.A tour in 2015 (and hopefully will settle some scores there!).

Posted by gsingh7 on (November 19, 2013, 12:30 GMT)

kp is best cricketer from england i ever seen. no cricketer have bigger influence in changing course of english test than kp. the time he ,prior and trott have started playing for england after leaving their countries of birth i.e.south africa is the time england have starting winning regularly. now england need to win ashes to cross india at 119 rating points to be second best test side in the world.if kp and trott bats well ,england will win or draw ashes in aus.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 12:28 GMT)

kp u r best player in the world

Posted by whoster on (November 19, 2013, 12:16 GMT)

There's been times where KP has deserved criticism, but plenty more occasions where it's been unjust. Because he isn't a born and bred Englishman, he's always had to do more to be accepted, but let's not forget that the two biggest stars of English cricket of the past 30 years - Botham and Flintoff - certainly had their faults also. Beefy and Freddie are rightly regarded as heroes in England, and we put up with those faults. KP was very sily with what he did in 2012, but that's water under the bridge. Let's now accept him for the outstanding player he's been for England since 2005.

His grinding century at Old Trafford last summer should surely put to rest the stupid claims that he plays for himself and not the team. England were well behind in that Test, and it required an innings of discipline, self-restraint and determination. KP delivered exactly that, and it went a long way toward saving that Test.

Let's give KP full credit for achieving this great milestone of 100 caps.

Posted by Mitch1066 on (November 19, 2013, 11:58 GMT)

Kevin p is one best players in world

Posted by Mitch1066 on (November 19, 2013, 11:46 GMT)

Kp one best batsmen in world and one best batsmen play for England

Posted by vvbr on (November 19, 2013, 11:41 GMT)

If there is one player in England team who scares the opposition bowlers - it is KP. KP is one of the best out there. I watch England cricket only for the following people KP, Broad, Anderson, Trott, Bell! The only craving English Cricket should be having is Flintoff and KP should have played for some more time together. English cricket has failed to handle KP the way India handled Kohli. KP is definitely in the past decades of England - of course he is in the league of Gooch, Botham, Gattings etc.,!

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 11:38 GMT)

England have produced many great batsmen. But many of them follow a similar archetype. Hutton, Hobbs, Sutcliffe, Barrington, Gower, Thorpe, Ranji, Dulip, Boycott, Gooch namely. If you think about it you can describe them as textbook technically correct players, who accumulated their runs in a stylish manner. In modern times Cook, Trott, Bell, Atherton, Stewart, Vaughan continued this trend.

But few ENG batsmen batted with the kind of destruction and flair that a Lara, Viv Richards, Bradman, Ponting etc had. Pietersen alongside, Hammond, Compton & Ted Dexter are the few that did, which is why KP will always stand out when judging the great English batsmen.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 11:27 GMT)

KP is my SRT. I followed him just like Indians follow SRT.

Posted by Murnau on (November 19, 2013, 11:25 GMT)

I don't think Pietersen's personality needs to be tolerated at all, for it has been valuable in lending charisma and elan to the England batting. If there is any fear factor with England's batters at all, it is derived from Kevin. A player of great innings for England. A batter who once settled, makes the big scores. But also one who is willing to scrap on his bad days. A versatile player who will dig in and then go on to exploit his opportunities. But sadly, one not always appreciated or understood by his country.

Congratulations to him on the 100 caps. And really, thanks for the memories. It'd be 'fantastic' to acquire some more in Brisbane.

Posted by CricketMaan on (November 19, 2013, 11:15 GMT)

But for KP, Eng and Cook could have not won in India. That defining innings in Mumbai along wiht Cook was the turning point. If KP wasnt there, every possiblity of a tight match was on the cards. But its history and KP, Cook, Jimmy, Swanny, Monty all rallied from then on and made it count for Eng. When KP is gone it will take some character out of this team. Bell and Trott are having a great time but can they be an impact player that KP is the big question.

Posted by npc_cricketlover on (November 19, 2013, 11:11 GMT)

KP is THE player i lookout for in each team. Being an Indian i rate him far above his contemporaries (and similar kind of players) like sehwag or dilshan, as he is quite consistent in all the 3 formats and plays all the 3 formats in the way they should be played respectively. He stands apart as he is consistently able to score big in tests and that too even outside his home country.

Posted by sachin_vvsfan on (November 19, 2013, 11:04 GMT)

He changed the fate of the Eng in their last India tour. Of course it was Monty with the bowling but he made enough runs for Monty to defend and win . Cook probably realized he alone cant win in India and so fastened KP's re integration process which is in sharp contrast to Clarke who ousted Katich their best opening partner then. Does chappel take a note of this?

Posted by ODI_BestFormOfCricket on (November 19, 2013, 10:57 GMT)

kp is far better player than cook. Kp is dominant, destructive, dynamic player while cook is single minded, one directional defensive batsman. Kp will be remembered by more than cook.

Posted by humi_cric on (November 19, 2013, 10:55 GMT)

KP is the X-Factor in England team, like Kohli in Ind and Amla in SA. Love his agressive batting, still remember his brutal innings of 186 against India in 2012.

Posted by Front-Foot-Sponge on (November 19, 2013, 10:40 GMT)

Box office player. I've been on the wrong end of the stick as a spectator and loved it. The games loves KP.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge-Looks-Silly-Now on (November 19, 2013, 10:35 GMT)

England are so lucky that they have all these gifted South African players to choose from.

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 10:20 GMT)

Integral coach- your comment saying his better than any current Australian batsman is silly. Clarke didn't score 300 more runs than any other batsman in 2012 for no reason. His one of the best current test batsman, and a jet in front of pietersen

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 10:08 GMT)

KP is of course one of the greatest batsmen cricket has ever seen. But for such a volatile character to play 100 Tests speaks volumes about the trust the England management had on him over the last decade or so. The likes of Strauss, Flower, Cook, etc deserve more credit. Reminds me of Kambli. No matter how talented you are, sometimes you need the backing of the leaders and administrators. KP has that favour. Good luck for him in the future.

Posted by IntegralCoach on (November 19, 2013, 10:03 GMT)

One of the greatest modern day batsman - nothing can compare with him in the Aussie line-up......

Posted by 36yearsofexperience on (November 19, 2013, 9:49 GMT)

without kp England batting is so boring, that nobody will bother whether they win or loose.

Posted by R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (November 19, 2013, 9:49 GMT)

Definitely overdue a few big knocks. Really get the feeling we need KP to fire this series, and as he usually reserved his best for strong opponents and/or at times when I'm rapidly losing faith, exciting prospects lie ahead.

Quote from Simpsons: "Everyone makes mistakes; that's why they put erasers on pencils" - springs to mind for KP...

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 9:39 GMT)

He is just lucky to be part of Eng team. I rate Ian Bell above him,,,,

Posted by r.nadun on (November 19, 2013, 9:23 GMT)

He is one of the great batsman people would love to see.Test ,ODI or T20 he play the game in lot of passion.Wonderful person & great character of the modern game.I hope he would play lot of matches in future & score lot of hundred. All the best for Sir.Kevin Peterson .

Posted by EagleDave111 on (November 19, 2013, 9:22 GMT)

KP always attracts negative press (and the occasional fawning piece here and there) but there is little doubt he is high quality and when in form he is a major asset to our batting line up.

It took me a long time to warm to him but I love watching him play and forgive him his odd lapse or two - he's box office.

Come on KP - put the Aussies to the sword.

Posted by Lmaotsetung on (November 19, 2013, 9:06 GMT)

"I know there's been a lot of people talking about my career and saying that I'm probably going to finish at the end of this series." I see KP's been reading my comments lately...LOL

Posted by   on (November 19, 2013, 9:00 GMT)

Congrats KP more expect from you~~ Enjoy the game

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