The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
CIMA Gallary
Email This Page
Best birthday present ever: Kevin

London: Kevin Pietersen did not seem overly concerned by the problems of captaincy after being thrust into the leadership of the England team for Saturday’s final one-day International against New Zealand here at Lord’s.

England need to win to end their five-match series with the Black Caps all square at 2-2.

But Pietersen told reporters at Lord’s here on Friday: “If we do everything we said in our team meeting, I’ll be smoking a cigar at mid-off.”

The South Africa-born Pietersen celebrated his 28th birthday and the Hampshire batsman added: “It’s an amazing job, an amazing honour and I am thrilled to bits. It’s the best birthday present ever, I guess.

“I think I’ll be a similar captain to the kind of person I am. I’ll be calm, pretty chilled and let my gut instincts and feelings guide me.”

But Daniel Vettori said England would miss Durham all-rounder Collingwood as a cricketer even more than a captain. “He leaves a gaping hole. We think he’s their best player with his all-round capabilities.

“Pietersen has huge shoes to fill but he’s the sort of guy who seems to demand that sort of attention.”

“Tactically, I think I am pretty sound and aware of certain situations,” Pietersen said.

But he added: “This is a temporary job. Paul Collingwood has done a fantastic job, he’s the skipper.”

“The main objective is not worrying about me, it’s about making sure we win and draw the series.”

Email This Page