Monday, November 29, 1999

Pietersen is England`s trump card for the final

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India, May 16 -- Australia's amazing win over Pakistan reaffirms their status as favourites to win the ICC World Twenty20. Of course, nothing can ever be certain in this version of the game, but the flexibility that the Australian team has, coupled with their enormous self-belief, gives them the edge. England haven't done badly either after the disaster of the Guyana match against the hosts, which they lost on the D/L method. They have picked themselves up splendidly and they too have lots of options in both bowling and batting. It is just that when they play against old rivals Australia, they seem a lot more tense and subdued than against other teams. It is in the psychological department that the Aussies score over the English and the one possible way that it can change is if Kevin Pietersen takes charge and gets them away. He is the one player that the Australians will be wary of, but they also know that they can play on his ego and challenge him to try and do the impossible. Pietersen will be really charged up for the finals, especially since nothing will give him greater pleasure than putting one across the Aussies.Hopefully the finals will be as close as the Australia - Pakistan semis and not the damp squib that the first semis was.

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