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On This Day: Kevin Pietersen scored fourth ODI century vs Australia during ICC Cricket World Cup 2007

On this day in 2007, former England batsman Kevin Pietersen had scored his fourth ODI century during the 35th match of the ICC Cricket World Cup against Australia in Antigua.

Pietersen, who amassed 558 runs in his first 11 ODIs at an average of 139.50 and a strike rate of 100.72 including three centuries and two half-centuries, reached the three-figure mark after more than two years in this format.

In the 36 ODIs that Pietersen played in between his third and fourth ODI century, he scored 1,251 runs at an average of 44.67 and a strike rate of 88.84 including 12 haf-centuries.

The right-hand batsman maintaining an ODI average of 56.53 despite not scoring a century for over two years speaks highly about him being the No. 1 ODI batsman at the time of the World Cup.

After the then England captain Michael Vaughan won the toss and opted to bat, Pietersen found himself in the middle in the seventh over as Vaughan (5) and Andrew Strauss (7) were dismissed cheaply by Australia fast bowler Shaun Tait.

England opening batsman Ian Bell (77) and Pietersen stitched a 140-run stand for the third wicket to lay a solid foundation for the remaining batsmen. However, losing wickets at regular intervals saw the English getting dismissed on 247 in 49.5 overs.

Pietersen, then 26, got his eye in before showing first signs of aggression against Australia’s part-time spinner in Michael Clarke.

Having completed a 49-ball half-century in the 23rd over, Pietersen reached the three-figure mark after 25 overs amidst wickets falling from the other end.

Pietersen’s 104 (122) with the help of six fours and a six ended up in a losing cause as Australia sealed the chase in the 48th over on the back of individual half-centuries from captain Ricky Ponting (86) and Clarke (55*).

Times of Sports
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