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KP thrills, before the golf takes over

Oliver Brett | 18:48 UK time, Sunday, 22 July 2007

ob66.jpgThe hour after lunch is traditionally the time at a Lord’s Test when some spectators’ focus begins to wander a bit.

I mean – there are so many things to do besides watch cricket – eat, drink, have a nap in the sunshine, or on this particular Sunday find a TV screen to watch events unfold at Carnoustie.

But a very typical Test century from Kevin Pietersen, his third at Lord’s, kept virtually every spectator firmly occupied.

With all due respect to Monty Panesar’s mesmeric stuff late in the day, KP’s thrilling strokeplay – in a match which has not proved easy pickings for a number of batsmen – was the outstanding feature of day four.

One of the less reported facts about Pietersen is that he is actually quite a slow starter.

It took him 23 minutes to hit a boundary, and only after he had lost Michael Vaughan did he show any real attacking intent.

Pietersen shows his delight after reaching his century

Perhaps affronted by RP Singh’s removal of his skipper, he square cut Zaheer Khan for four and cover-drove him for another boundary from successive balls.

He throttled back for a while, as Singh removed Paul Collingwood and Ian Bell, taking 88 balls to reach his fifty.

But after lunch, fortified by his burgeoning partnership with Matt Prior, he cut loose.

An off-drive here, a leg-glance there and a steer through midwicket took him to 89 at which point he was facing Anil Kumble, bowling from the Nursery End.

Pietersen cut ferociously for four, and danced down the wicket for a six that hung ostentatiously in the air before nestling on top of the covers.

One more flick through the leg-side got him to the landmark so coveted by batsmen, and he looked in total control.

Only when England’s hopeless tail-end batting forced another flurry of wickets – and Rahul Dravid put every fielder back on the boundary - did he run out of steam.

Inevitably, his wicket was a slightly deflating moment – but it also freed up some time for a number of people (including cricket journalists) to watch the climax of The Open.

It is symptomatic of the sheer bulk of international cricket played these days that a Lord’s Test can be scheduled at the same time as the most important golf event of the British summer.

And though it was odd to see around 25 of us crowded around the screen relaying events from north of the border – while Monty’s battle with Sourav Ganguly was largely ignored – it was not entirely unexpected.

In any case, it was thoroughly entertaining hearing Geoffrey Boycott lay into Padraig Harrington’s approach to the 18th – before Graham Gooch and David Lloyd argued about the play-off rules.

Comments  Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 07:55 PM on 22 Jul 2007,
  • Gavin wrote:

Speak for yourself Oliver - I couldn't care about golf. There's no player in the world as entertaining as Pietersen when he's in this form. What a statement, to have every single fielder bar the wicket keeper on the boundary. Just a shame KP ran out of support

He has the potential to be one of the greats, but we won't know for another 10 years.

  • 2.
  • At 01:57 AM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Down_on_the_luck or Luke your choice wrote:

Kp once again shows why he is the best and most entertaining batsman in the world, the celebration shows how much the game means to him. Which is alot more than his more established rivals for the number one spot can muster.

The frightening thing is that he looks better and more composed with each hundred and the speed in which he can turn a well crafted 50 into a dominant quick hundred is scary. In all the years i've watched cricket (which to be honest as my 18th was only yesterday isn't that long) i haven't seen a batsman with that ability. To take a game out of the reach of the opposition which such carefree and simple style.

a toast then to the best (in my opinion) batsman in cricket. now if only he could play off the back foot....

  • 3.
  • At 09:49 AM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Nick Price wrote:

"And though it was odd to see around 25 of us crowded around the screen relaying events from north of the border – while Monty’s battle with Sourav Ganguly was largely ignored – it was not entirely unexpected"

Maybe you should have been concentrating on the job you were being paid to do by the license payers...

  • 4.
  • At 10:48 AM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Andrew Evans wrote:

Agree with Nick Price. Are the BBC's Golf journalists getting paid to sit around watching play from Lord's? Thanks for the thrilling insights on the Panesar/Ganguly battle, next time try watching the cricket!

  • 5.
  • At 10:49 AM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Gareth wrote:

If you want a job covering Golf then go to it
I suggest tho that if u r being paid to cover the cricket then maybe that is what u should be watching
it will not only be far more entertaining but might be able to provide you with enough insight to get some of the articles on the game right
I think that everyone running off to watch it on ther tv when such a good game of cricket is going on is pathetic and i suggest that people that will concentrate on the game they are attending should be shipped in for the next test!

I think it is bloomin daft that you'd even write this piece - you should have been watching the cricket....most of the folks who read this blog would watch and write for free. As for Boyks et al - same applies - if you are being paid to comment on Monty etc. - do so!

  • 7.
  • At 12:33 PM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • ed wrote:

I agree - why were you watching the golf when it was the cricket you were being paid (probably a sizable figure) to comment upon.

I love the anecdotes and funny comments that get thrown in, but to say that you were not watching the most exciting spin prospect for a decade because someone was playing golf in Scotland is bizarre.

I am a journalist and to be honest I am wondering whether you need some training in basic journalistic ethics. Or perhaps you should look a little more dispassionately at the work you produce – it is easy to get caught in the moment and think that everyone is interested in and "with you" in the comments you are making and the excitement of your little group in the commentary box.

Perhaps the comments here will demonstrate to you that you need to think a little more before "bashing those keys".

  • 8.
  • At 01:39 PM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • gajananphate wrote:

he is outstandingplayernatural stroke playeraggresionalwaysbe confidentlot of

  • 9.
  • At 01:56 PM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Jon Croxford wrote:

I expect sports reporters to be just that: I expect them to grasp the concept that a test match - for example - is not the only major sporting event being hosted at any given moment. I am pleased that this particular reporter has a perspective which allows him to give fleeting attention to one of the most exciting Open Championships in recent times.

Look at the title given to the author, critics among you: "BBC Sport journalist". Not "BBC Cricket journalist" or "BBC Golf journalist". And this is an irreverant blog, not a staid match report. I love the idea of Boycott criticising Harrington's approach; he would have extravagently gone for the tee with his second shot, I suppose!

  • 10.
  • At 02:08 PM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Emil Leblues wrote:

Pietersen should realize the difference between one day and test. As his batting was pretty rough that rough handling got him out, It wasn’t classic batting technique. So there is nothing to be happy about. Expect we have some runs. I expected England to have 400+ lead. But well!!

  • 11.
  • At 02:26 PM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Martin wrote:

This is only a blog, albeit a blog he has been paid to write, so lets not be too hard on Oliver Brett. The astonishing thing is that ALL of the cricket journalists were watching golf on TV - Boycott, Gooch the lot.

Many of the posters here are shooting the messenger. This is a valuable insight into the world of the sports journo. Next time we read a report of a football match we have been to, and we think "did he even watch the same game?", we'll know the answer.

  • 12.
  • At 04:01 PM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Pat wrote:

i suppose that none of those complaining about Oliver Brett watching the golf whilst supposedly covering the cricket have never had a sly listen to TMS whilst at work, or checked the overly updates on the web?

if you are a cricket lover you must have taken time out of work to catch up. NAUGHTY NAUGHTY - what are you being paid for?!!

  • 13.
  • At 05:04 PM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • Ed wrote:

Nonsense not non sense - what you attempting to say makes more sense that way.

But lets not get into personal insults dear boy, I was merely pointing out that he was being a little unprofessional, equally I was a little like that myself in my reply so…

In reality I am an editor not a journalist, it is my job to keep journo's in-line. Plus I am probably half your age, so no, I am not jealous.

I just hope you are Tommy and not the author loggged in under a different name...

  • 14.
  • At 05:39 PM on 23 Jul 2007,
  • don arnold wrote:

Great knock by KP yesterday but why did he waste what might prove an invaluable half-hour shielding Monty from the bowling while adding a few meagre runs which we did not need anyway? Knowing today`s weather forecast was bad, the captain should have said "Hit out and get out or I`ll declare". Can you imagine the Aussies wasting time like that? Change gear into one-day mode and improve your chances of winning say I.

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