KP 'on fire' ahead of Ashes

2010-11-06 17:15
Kevin Pietersen (File)

Perth - Rejuvenated by a brief stint in his homeland of South Africa, England batsman Kevin Pietersen says he is "on fire" heading into the upcoming Ashes series.

Pietersen opened his Ashes tour by top-scoring for England in their first innings of the three-day tour match against Western Australia at the WACA Ground.

Dropped on 25 in slips as he made a streaky start to his knock, Pietersen scored 58, including nine boundaries, as England slumped to 117/7 before recovering slightly to declare at 223/8.

Pietersen is looking to put a modest 12 months with the bat behind him, having not made a Test century since March last year, and was delighted with his first innings of the Ashes tour.

He said a brief stint in South Africa in October, during which he played two first-class games and also spent time with long-time mentor Graham Ford, had him primed to recapture his best form against Australia.

"I really enjoyed today, it is always nice to get time out in the middle," he said

"I have been working really hard over the last six weeks to get to a place where I am at at the moment.

"As I said, coming back from South Africa a couple of weeks I feel top draw again."

Pietersen said it was the mental, rather than technical, side of the his game that needed work and admitted his confidence had suffered in recent times as he struggled with his own form.

"I have never really been a technical player, you've seen me play for six years," he said.

"I play like a clown, it is my mental approach that I needed to change.

"I needed to get a load of confidence back and I'm on fire at the moment, so I am very happy."

Pietersen said the time spent working with Ford was invaluable.

"It was amazing, I have worked with him since I was six or seven years old and he is a great family friend," he said.

"Fordy just knows me.

"He knows how to sort me out."

The Australians have often taken aim at Pietersen for being a selfish player and paceman Doug Bollinger recently commented that they were confident the tall right-hander's ego would get in his way during the Ashes.

On his last tour of Pietersen made 490 runs at 54.44, but England was thrashed 5-0 in the series.

Pietersen, who insisted he had paid no attention to Australia's current form woes in all forms of cricket, said he was totally focussed on team goals this time around.

"Team business for sure," he said when asked if he had unfinished business in Australia.

"I got 500 runs here at 55 or something last time.

"I'd take 350 and an Ashes victory for sure."

Read more on:    ashes

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Thursday, 14 December 2017
Australia v England, Perth 04:30
Tuesday, 26 December 2017
Australia v England, Melbourne Cricket Ground 01:30
Thursday, 04 January 2018
Australia v England, Sydney Cricket Ground 01:30
Previous Results

Date Match Result

Who will win the 2017 edition of the Ashes?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.