Flower hails KP return

Batsman back to his best, says England coach

Last Updated: 15/05/10 4:12pm

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Pietersen: Back in form

Pietersen: Back in form

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England coach Andy Flower believes that Kevin Pietersen is hitting top form ahead of Sunday's ICC World Twenty20 final.

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Pietersen temporarily left the tournament in the West Indies in order to witness the birth of his first child.

But the batsman showed no ill effects of the 8,000-mile return trip in the semi-final clash with Sri Lanka, as he top-scored with 42 during England's successful run chase.

Flower is now confident that the 29-year-old is playing to his full potential after recent struggles in South Africa and Bangladesh.

"He's in really good form; he worked bloody hard on his game in Bangladesh," Flower said.

"Even for great athletes like him, that sort of hard work stands you in really good stead.

Hard work

"I think there should be a strong summer ahead for him. He's had an up-and-down 12 months - but from that hard work in Bangladesh, you see a man very confident in the way he's going about things."

Despite the long trip home, Pietersen missed only one match as he became a father for the first time.

Flower says that he never had any doubts over the former captain's mindset and focus when he rejoined his team-mates

He added: "I think we were quite lucky with the way it fell. But I suppose we got two good results (beforehand), so in that regard we made our own luck.

"The only concern was a bit of jet-lag. But he's a good, professional athlete so I didn't have any concerns about his state of mind.

"He took a sleeping tablet on the flight over, slept then and slept well on the night before the game."

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