Hampshire left-hander Jimmy Adams is backing England’s Kevin Pietersen to be one of the most consistent batsmen during the upcoming Ashes series. Despite Pietersen being out of form for most of the English summer, Adams feels that he will deliver on the big stage.
Adams told Cricket World: “There is no doubt that the class and everything is there for him. It seems ridiculous that he is getting heaps of criticism from people for being out of form when there is no doubt that he is the batsman that the Australians fear. On the big occasion he has nearly always stood up and delivered I think he will be there with England’s most consistent batters of the series.”
Although Adams has the belief in the superstar batsman, he does not feel that Pietersen is their only hope of retaining the Ashes. It is now the general consensus that England have built a strong squad of players from which to draw from and they will need to play as a team to defeat Ricky Ponting’s Australian side.
“I do not think it hinges on him now England have players that are capable of it all. I do not think it is going to make a huge difference. It is a collective effort now, batting, bowling or what ever it is. It might just come down to the smallest detail, rather just be a case of wickets and runs it might be a case of holding your catches and your chances here and there because wickets are hard to come by here and there. Perhaps the side with the best catching ratio will come out on top.”
Like many, Adams feels that Ashes victory in Australia is a genuine possibility this year, thanks to some fine form during the English summer and a great understanding from captain Andrew Strauss and coach Andy Flower.
“It is the best chance in Australia for a long time, England are a great unit at the moment, they have been settled but they have also got a decent squad. there are always injuries but now there are players that can come in and the team wont suffer for it. Whereas the Australians are having a tough time of it but you can bet your bottom dollar that things will be reset come the Ashes. I think it will be a very very good series, it may just boil down to who wins important sessions here and there.”
Adams will also be in Australia with the England Lions as they tour Australia. The top-order batsman know how crucial it is for England’s back up team to be ready and accustomed to the conditions just in case they are needed to fill in on the big stage.
Adams has been picked for the tour on the back of a fantastic season, as he scored more than 600 runs in Hampshire’s successful Twenty20 campaign.
“(England Lions) is a stepping stone and it is a stepping stone I did not think I would get to. The last two years have been great, and I feel a lot more comfortable. This winter is a great opportunity to test myself and see what happens. If something like that (full England side) happens, it is a huge thing and a great thing to aim for.
"I have just got to go about things the way I have done really and fingers crossed it will keep me in good stead. It should be an exciting winter, with lots of opportunities and fingers crossed it will be another good year for Hampshire when I get back from it all.”
The exciting left-hander has just signed a new three-year contract for Hampshire so he will be playing for his home club until at least 2013, which means he will be able to witness some of the huge developments the Rose Bowl has got planned.
“To see on finals day that the Rose Bowl was packed and then to think they are going to stick some stuff on the other end and when that is completed it is going to be an unbelievable place to play. What they director and the other guys in the hierarchy have done has been unbelievable. There are plenty of diggers and trucks moving around there at the moment and once it is all finished it will be a fantastic place to play cricket. It will be a honor to play there, so I am very much looking forward to that."
© Cricket World 2010