Twenty20 victory created huge belief – Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen wants the inspiration from England’s Barbados victory over Australia in the World Twenty20 final to carry into the upcoming ODI series against Australia as thoughts turn to the Ashes series later this year.

England swept Australia aside to claim their first ICC title, with Pietersen finishing Player of the Tournament, and he believes the fact that the success came away from home will give England confidence that they can produce a repeat come the winter.

Kieswetter and Pietersen seal title for England

Craig Kieswetter and Kevin Pietersen powered England to their first ICC global title with an irresistible 111-run stand for the second wicket, as Australia were outmuscled in a battle of the bowlers at Bridgetown. Despite a brave recovery led by David Hussey, who made 59 from 54 balls, Australia’s hopes of claiming the only world title to have eluded them were devastated from the moment they lost three wickets in 13 legitimate deliveries in a stunning start to the contest.

England stroll to resounding win

Kevin Pietersen marked the birth of his first son by steering England into the final of the ICC World Twenty20, as he continued his imposing run of form with an unbeaten 42 from 26 balls in a comprehensive seven-wicket victory. Back in the side after his paternity dash back to England, Pietersen built on the hard-hitting efforts of Craig Kieswetter and Michael Lumb, who added 68 for the first wicket in eight overs, as Sri Lanka’s sub-par total of 128 for 6 was hunted down with four overs to spare.

Pietersen sets up emphatic victory

England completed a clinical 39-run win over South Africa at the Kensington Oval to get one foot in the semi-finals. The win was set up by a blistering half century from Kevin Pietersen, who added 94 for the second wicket with Craig Kieswetter as England got the better of South Africa’s pace-heavy attack to post 168 for 7. England’s spin duo of Michael Yardy and Graeme Swann then picked up 5 for 55 between them to run through the middle order, and were well backed up by the seamers as South Africa were rolled over for 129.

Pietersen seals England victory

Kevin Pietersen returned to form with a confident 52-ball 73 not out, as England’s powerful new batting line-up capitalised on a spirited display from their bowlers – as well as some poor fielding from Pakistan – to ease along to a comfortable six-wicket victory with three balls to spare. After two rain-affected contests in Guyana, it was England’s first victory of their World Twenty20 campaign and a vital one too, coming as it did against the reigning champions.

Pietersen slams Chittagong pitch

kevinKevin Pietersen believes he is back to his best form after battling to overcome his technical deficiencies against left-arm spin, but he has nevertheless voiced his criticism of the Chittagong wicket that aided his recovery in the first Test against Bangladesh. Pietersen made 99 in England’s first innings of the series and followed that up with a hard-hitting 32 from 24 balls, but feels that the surface on which the match was played was bad for spectators, and by extension, the five-day game as a whole.

Razzaq blitz levels series for Pakistan

razzakAbdul Razzaq produced a blistering innings of 46 not out from 18 balls as Pakistan squared the two-match Twenty20 series in dramatic style in Dubai. Defending a target of 148 following a timely return to form for Kevin Pietersen, England’s bowlers looked to have the game in the bag as Pakistan slumped to 78 for 5 after 13 overs, following a two-wicket debut over from Ajmal Shahzad, and a brilliant spell of 4-1-14-3 from Graeme Swann.

Impressive Morgan leads England to victory

morganKevin Pietersen produced arguably his most composed innings since his return from Achilles surgery, while Eoin Morgan continued the improvisatory form that has made him an instant veteran of England’s limited-overs squads, as Pakistan were overwhelmed by an unbeaten 112-run partnership in the first Twenty20 in Dubai.

The stand was England’s highest for any wicket in Twenty20s, and fittingly it was Morgan who sealed the match with a six – a monstrous hoist over deep backward square – as England rattled to victory with nine balls to spare. It was an impressive way to bounce back after the disappointment of losing to the England Lions in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday, and the victory was on the cards from the moment that Pakistan were restricted to 129 for 8 despite winning the toss and batting first.

England on the ropes after South Africa declaration

smithNot even the loss of an average of 30 overs per day, nor the smokescreen of an ECB-led witch-hunt into the failings of the UDRS system, seem likely to save England from a crushing series-squaring defeat in the fourth and final Test at Johannesburg, after another day in which South Africa’s superior technique with bat and ball overcame a series of interruptions for thunderstorms and bad light. When play was suspended with 20 overs of the third day still to be bowled, Kevin Pietersen and Paul Collingwood were clinging on desperately, having watched as three of their colleagues were blown away by a trio of pumped-up pace bowlers.

It all comes down to the Bullring

smithMatch facts
January 14-18, 2009
Start time 10.30 am (0830 GMT)

Big Picture

With its towering stands at either end of the ground, and the forbidding Perspex tunnel leading from the pavilion to the playing area, there are few more daunting venues for a touring team than the Wanderers. Factor in the prospect of a seething green surface and an opposition ready to bring a “do-or-die” attitude into the contest, and the stage is set for a battle of rare intensity. For all the narrowness of their escapes at Centurion and Cape Town, if England prevail in the grand finale of a memorable campaign, no-one will question their right to return home with the spoils.