I know, I’m quite late on commenting on this, but, the transformation in the side after KP took charge is quite hard to believe, yet, its something that I actually predicted in one of my earlier post.
For those of you who had doubted his ability, and felt that the win in the test and the 1st ODI was a fluke, the 2nd ODI must have served to dispel any doubts. I didn’t watch the match, but the commentary on cricinfo gave me a good idea of exactly what happened. To get a really good side like SA out for 83 on a good batting track really speakes volumes about the way Pietersen has motivated a side which has often lacked the ‘killer instinct’.
Pietersen comes across as a very instinctive captain, who makes bowling changes when his gut tells him that something special may happen, which is precisely how he got Smith (or Gibbs, not too sure) out in the first ODI by giving Samit Patel, an occasional spinner, a bowl.
The fact that Flntoff made a substantial score in the 1st ODI after a very long time also tells you much about how well Pietersen has done to motivate him.
His efforts on Steve Harmison shouldn’t also be forgotten. I had mentioned, in an earlier post, that the recall of Harmison was foolish, because the one – time England bowling coach, Allan Donald, said that nothing was wrong with his technique, just that he had a fear of bowling on the big stage. However, his announcement that he has come out of ODI retirement is a credit to Pietersen’s effort!
KUDOS to Pietersen, and I just sincerely hope that he doesn’t fall into the habit of picking ‘from the family’, like Vaughan used to!