Vaughn backs KP to come good

Michael Vaughan, the former England captain says Kevin Pietersen knows what he needs to do to shut-up his critics among the crowds in South Africa — score hundreds.

South Africa-born Pietersen made his name as an international player under Vaughan’s leadership by scoring three hundreds during the one-day leg of England’s tour of South Africa in 2004/05.

”It’s just like the Ricky Ponting situation in the summer: the more you talk about it, the more it happens,” said Vaughan as he reflected on the rough ride the Australia captain got from some home fans during the course of England’s Ashes series win earlier this year.

”The way to deal with it is exactly how Kev dealt with it last time, when he reeled off three hundreds,” Vaughan added.

Pietersen started off the 2004/05 series being booed mercilessly by home fans, angered by his change of allegiance which the batsman controversially attributed to his being denied opportunities in South Africa because of a quota system designed to advance the progress of non-white cricketers.

England’s current tour of South Africa has again seen Pietersen cast as a kind of ”pantomime villain” by some home fans but, unlike five years ago he has so far struggled for runs.

Returning from the Achilles injury which sidelined him from most of the Ashes, Pietersen has so far managed scores of four, 45 and three in the ongoing one-day series which England lead 2-1 with one to play.

”Because KP is so famous we are making a big story out of it,” said Vaughan.

”He is probably a bit desperate to get a score and that can have its effect on your game.

”But the real positive for England is that they are winning matches without him contributing.

”When he does that will add another 15 percent to the team and that will take us to a really good level.

”Kevin has got such a good eye for the ball and has scoring areas which people dream about. He just has to try to be as positive as he can.”

Meanwhile Vaughan was encouraged by the way another South Africa-born batsman Jonathan Trott, whose loyalties he’d previously queried by saying he’d been celebrating with South Africa following their series-clinching win at Edgbaston some 16 months ago, and ex-Ireland batsman Eoin Morgan were becoming key members of the one-day top-order.

”Jonathan Trott is going to be ‘Mr Consistent’ for England,” said Vaughan. ”I have been really impressed with him so far.

”As for Eoin Morgan, I think he is the player that England have been looking for for the last 15 years.

”He reminds me so much of Neil Fairbrother [the former Lancashire and England left-hander who was best known as a one-day batsman], and he has got that six-hitting ability to go with it.” — AFP



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