Home Pride: Pietersen’s father and College cricket coach speak

2008-08-04 00:00

KEVIN Pietersen’s parents, who live in Pinetown, were overjoyed at yesterday’s announcement that the Maritzburg College old boy is to captain England’s Test and one-day cricket sides.

Pietersen’s father, Jannie, said he is overawed and still trying to take everything in. He said he went home for lunch and saw the announcement on Sky News.

After being “glued to the TV”, he was running late for an afternoon meeting and would have to apologise.

“We just know that he will need a lot of support and a lot of prayer,” he said, adding that they are a very close family and that Kevin discussed the possibility of captaining England with his parents and brothers on Sunday night.

Pietersen said Kevin is extremely excited, and realises it is an incredible honour to lead a country and cricketers of such high calibre.

He described his son’s career as a fairy tale and said it has been difficult to absorb all that has happened over the past four years.

Pietersen’s parents attended the Lord’s Test last month and are making arrangements to go back to England as soon as possible.

The news also saw Sky Sports interviewing Pietersen’s former coach, Mike Bechet, at Maritzburg College.

Bechet expressed the school’s delight at Pietersen’s meteoric rise in English cricket.

“As a school, we are absolutely chuffed for him and we wish him all the best,” Bechet said.

He added that the school is always happy to see Kevin perform well — but not the rest of the England team.

“I just hope that the promotion won’t affect his form, because the pressure that comes with the job is relentless.”

Bechet said that although Pietersen is inexperienced as a leader, his fierce determination and passion will stand him in good stead for the challenges he’ll face.

“He is tremendously strong-willed and will lead from the front, which is why he has been able to make it to the top of his game,” Bechet said.

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