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Old 6th December 2010, 12:40   #41
Michelle Fivefer
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Apparently he's been working harder than ever so top form would eventually come and the elusive ton was bound to be made sooner, rather than later.

Nonetheless it does grate a bit when you hear or read about the notions that he's made the runs because it's against Australia and he rises to the occasion. Even without a huge contribution from him, England would be still bossing this test match.

Maybe the runs are flowing again, partly because the attack is very poor, the weather's been hot and the pitches have been flat. It's as simple as that, not just about his focus being greater because of the opponent. After all Australia is a middle-ranked team and not a very good one. These are hardly eighteen carat runs. Bangladeshi spinners would certainly have the skills to worry him more than any of Australia's.

As for his philosophies etcetera, he can be a tad contradictory.

Within weeks, I've heard him refer to his clown-like technique and liking for batting with freedom. And an interview done for television here, he explained away his getting out in the 90s, or once he's set, as just being him and he happily accepts it. He came out today and said it 'does his head in.' Allan Lamb said yesterday that he's possibly the hardest working cricketer he's ever come across.

Interesting though that the likes of Atherton and Hussain muse that he comes to the fore when England most need him. You think they could have done with some more runs against the Pakistanis when they were troubling the batsmen in favourable conditions, and at times against Steyn and co. in SA, especially given that Steyn is the top ranked quick in the world. Surely that's the sort of challenge KP relishes, not bashing up on rubbish bowlers like Bollinger, Siddle and Doherty.
No, it's not as simple as that, because he has been failing to reach 50 in first class cricket for England second division county sides and South African domestic sides as well as failing to get to 3 figures against Bangladesh on their flat wickets. If their spinners are as good as you say, the Banglas would have won more test matches and troubled more batsmen than Pietersen, but they didn't.

Whatever the state of Australian cricket currently, the Ashes is still a massive fixture for England, and having been humiliated in 2006/7 victory in this series would be very sweet indeed.
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Old 6th December 2010, 12:46   #42
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Doesnt grate with me unless he said it. If he didnt its just easy media waffle.

If the reason was the occasion and the oppo, he'd have done better in South Africa than he did.
No he didn't say it. It was just Hussain.

The Ashes must be the highest profile cricket event that Sky covers so they will be ecstatic that this high profile cricketer has come good at just this time.
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Old 6th December 2010, 12:50   #43
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How was this innings not "the way he plays"? His early shots to eX were risky but necessary to get him some momentum. Once his eye is in he carries on that way but it looks less risky because he connects so well (plus Aus's bowlers aren't very threatening). Later on he charged eX and hit him down the ground for 6. Some of his shots throughout the innings could have found a fielder on another day and we'd be talking of another innings cut short when he could have gone on ('cos 158 is a pittance).
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Old 6th December 2010, 13:36   #44
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we'd be talking of another innings cut short when he could have gone on ('cos 158 is a pittance).
Pietersen must have quite a few scores of 150+. He's just one of those players who is either brilliant or pathetic, there's not much middle ground. I certainly didn't see a great difference in his innings just gone to other excellent innings that he has played, other than that he contained himself from going into sixth gear once he passed a hundred. He still spent much of the innings in fifth gear.
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Old 6th December 2010, 14:27   #45
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Pietersen must have quite a few scores of 150+. He's just one of those players who is either brilliant or pathetic, there's not much middle ground. I certainly didn't see a great difference in his innings just gone to other excellent innings that he has played, other than that he contained himself from going into sixth gear once he passed a hundred. He still spent much of the innings in fifth gear.
It's so long since he played one that it's hard to remember.
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Old 6th December 2010, 14:32   #46
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It's so long since he played one that it's hard to remember.
Well, even if he had played 0 in the past few months, he'd still be level-pegging with Ian Bell .
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Old 6th December 2010, 15:06   #47
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Well, even if he had played 0 in the past few months, he'd still be level-pegging with Ian Bell .
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Old 6th December 2010, 21:23   #48
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How was this innings not "the way he plays"? His early shots to eX were risky but necessary to get him some momentum. Once his eye is in he carries on that way but it looks less risky because he connects so well (plus Aus's bowlers aren't very threatening). Later on he charged eX and hit him down the ground for 6. Some of his shots throughout the innings could have found a fielder on another day and we'd be talking of another innings cut short when he could have gone on ('cos 158 is a pittance).
Well quite. I did like Cesar's prolonged justification for his views on Pietersen just when the bloke played a huge innings in his usual vein with his usual sort of strike rate. Perhaps what he was doing all along wasn't bad after all.
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Old 6th December 2010, 23:00   #49
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Well quite. I did like Cesar's prolonged justification for his views on Pietersen just when the bloke played a huge innings in his usual vein with his usual sort of strike rate. Perhaps what he was doing all along wasn't bad after all.
Obviously "the way he plays" can expand depending on how he plays, and will always be available accurately to describe his play at any given time. But I'm not sure that KP's been playing quite like that all along. A relatively poor record in recent times, his being dropped from the ODI side for some reason, and his explanation of how he's moved his game on would suggest, regardless of what the KP-o-philes might say, that it isn't quite a case of everything having been hunky dory all along. It's true that he got himself out playing an ambitious shot as was usual in the old days, but it's kinda weird that he waited until they were obviously going all out for quick declaration runs until he did it, don't you think? In any case, they're probably a little bit exaggerated, but Cesar's views tallied with quite a bit of the guff that I heard on the radio and TV.
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Old 6th December 2010, 23:28   #50
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Obviously "the way he plays" can expand depending on how he plays, and will always be available accurately to describe his play at any given time. But I'm not sure that KP's been playing quite like that all along. A relatively poor record in recent times, his being dropped from the ODI side for some reason, and his explanation of how he's moved his game on would suggest, regardless of what the KP-o-philes might say, that it isn't quite a case of everything having been hunky dory all along. It's true that he got himself out playing an ambitious shot as was usual in the old days, but it's kinda weird that he waited until they were obviously going all out for quick declaration runs until he did it, don't you think? In any case, they're probably a little bit exaggerated, but Cesar's views tallied with quite a bit of the guff that I heard on the radio and TV.
I'm sure Cesar will be pleased that he's on the same page as Ian Botham.
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Old 7th December 2010, 00:04   #51
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Obviously "the way he plays" can expand depending on how he plays, and will always be available accurately to describe his play at any given time. But I'm not sure that KP's been playing quite like that all along. A relatively poor record in recent times, his being dropped from the ODI side for some reason, and his explanation of how he's moved his game on would suggest, regardless of what the KP-o-philes might say, that it isn't quite a case of everything having been hunky dory all along. It's true that he got himself out playing an ambitious shot as was usual in the old days, but it's kinda weird that he waited until they were obviously going all out for quick declaration runs until he did it, don't you think? In any case, they're probably a little bit exaggerated, but Cesar's views tallied with quite a bit of the guff that I heard on the radio and TV.
Exactly. He played the innings perfectly throughout and finally got out in pursuit of a declaration total. Perhaps one innings isn't proof enough but I genuinely think that he has brought a new maturity to his batting.
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Old 7th December 2010, 01:30   #52
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Maybe you didnt watch the start of his innings to Doherty? I don't think he has changed his style, he's just played himself into form. As predicted.
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Old 7th December 2010, 03:51   #53
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Long may such form continue.
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Old 7th December 2010, 05:36   #54
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Maybe you didnt watch the start of his innings to Doherty? I don't think he has changed his style, he's just played himself into form. As predicted.

He actually hit some balls which fell perilously close to fielders or in gaps because Punter had a weirdly unothodox field.

He played well and probably got himself into form but the attack which is ordinary anyway, was pretty ragged once he arrived so it's hardly surprising that he ended up murdering it.
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Old 7th December 2010, 09:28   #55
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He probably didn't change the way he plays all that much, but it was heartening to hear the post-match interviews in which he didn't see the innings as a justification for a continuation of his previous modus operandum, but rather seemed to have a realisation that once you're in it's silly to get yourself out.
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Old 7th December 2010, 13:26   #56
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Well quite. I did like Cesar's prolonged justification for his views on Pietersen just when the bloke played a huge innings in his usual vein with his usual sort of strike rate. Perhaps what he was doing all along wasn't bad after all.
It wasn't his usual vein though. It was far more controlled. He didn't seem to be overcome with anxiety in the 90's which has often been his downfall and he seemed to treat the bowling on it's merits throughout (which accounts for the healthy run rate because so much of it was dross) - what he didn't do was attempt to smack the good balls off the world when he had reached 100.

It was the innings of a mature batsmen playing sensibly to take advantage of a great pitch and poorish bowling.
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Old 7th December 2010, 14:35   #57
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It wasn't his usual vein though. It was far more controlled. He didn't seem to be overcome with anxiety in the 90's which has often been his downfall and he seemed to treat the bowling on it's merits throughout (which accounts for the healthy run rate because so much of it was dross) - what he didn't do was attempt to smack the good balls off the world when he had reached 100.

It was the innings of a mature batsmen playing sensibly to take advantage of a great pitch and poorish bowling.
I think you're trying to apply logic retrospectively.

17 centuries, 2 doubles suggests that the 90s haven't been his downfall that often.

It's easy to say it was a controlled innings when he's facing mostly dross on a benign pitch in benign conditions. That still doesn't negate the early part of his innings when he was playing risky shots to Doherty. Once he got his form back, those risky shots looked controlled because they're so easy. A scoring rate of 4.5 an over is hardly watchful.

I don't agree with defending "the way he plays" when he does get out to a stupid shot, but this innings didn't suggest to me much of change of that way.
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Old 7th December 2010, 16:26   #58
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I think you're trying to apply logic retrospectively.

.
You obviously didn't see what I wrote at the time. No 20:20 hindsight here!
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Old 7th December 2010, 16:32   #59
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You obviously didn't see what I wrote at the time. No 20:20 hindsight here!
Clearly
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Old 9th December 2010, 19:57   #60
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He change his style in that he was much more controlled. No switch hits or other trick shots. He could get the big scores now.
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