Pietersen more than just a marketable asset

I’m becoming more and more convinced Pietersen will play a part against Australia this summer. Apart from his marketability, especially his questionable hair-style (which Ian Botham refers to, constantly, as a “dead mongoose” – or as he said the other day, a “dead mongrat”), he has talent in spades.

Today, he was the face behind the ECB’s marketing campaign called “England’s Big Summer.” Not Michael Vaughan, the respected England captain. Not Andrew Flintoff, the nation’s favourite bat-wielder. Not, even, big Steve Harmison – Kevin Pietersen was chosen. He of zero Tests and a million words written about him fame.

I hadn’t heard any rumours about this marketing campaign, but was pretty impressed with it. As discussed many times here, cricket struggles for back-page coverage and vainly tries to compete with Football – a losing battle – so, to see Kevin Pietersen smash several balls 111 metres (apt, isn’t it?!) into the River Thames, with the London Eye and Big Ben as the backdrop, was exciting stuff.

The ECB chose Kevin Pietersen, and so will Fletcher and Vaughan – so long as he makes at least one score against the Old Enemy in the ODI funfare. Hell, even the Aussies are rating him – Warne thinks he’s a bigger, and more dangerous, hitter than Flintoff, and Simon Katich (another Hampshire colleague) keeps raving about him.

With Andrew Miller (Cricinfo) discussing Vaughan’s tough-git mentality, and Thorpe lacking the counter-attacking shots that once made him so dangerous, all signs are pointing towards “600” making his Test debut against the antipodeans. And, yes, I’m probably going back on my word…

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