Pietersen urges team to prove itself in remainder of series

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New Delhi, Nov 24 (UNI) Even after India took an unassailable 4-0 lead and three more matches still to go, England skipper Kevin Pietersen has urged his players not to surrender meekly against a formidable home team and said the visitors can still prove a point or two in the remaining matches.

Last night in Bangalore, India won the the fourth ODI by 19 runs under Duckworth/Lewis method to take an unbeatable 4-0 lead in the series and England now faces a chance of white wash if they fail to win any of the remaining three ODIs.

''We're in India and we've still got a Test series to come,'' Pietersen was quoted as saying in the ECB website (www.ecb.co.uk) today.

''The boys have been treated well, they've been having a fantastic time and I want their chins up.

''I don't want to see anybody with their heads down and moping around, we want to come back firing on all cylinders on Wednesday (in Cuttack),'' he added.

Pietersen, who took over as skipper in the summer and led the team to a 4-0 one-day series win at home over South Africa, came under intense scrutiny in India for his poor tactics specially for not being able to marshall his troops well enough and overlooking his spinners on the spin-friendly wickets of India.

''We've got to bounce back and make sure we keep this series competitive,'' Pietersen said adding, ''We're going to hold our heads up high and get on with trying to win some games of cricket.'' On the other hand, India's purple patch continued as they won the third consecutive ODI series. Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni led his team to a tri-series in Australia in March and then beat hosts Sri Lanka in August.

Meanwhile, former England batsman Graham Thorpe believed that the visitors were ''out-thought, out-skilled and outplayed by a very good and competent Indian side.

Chasing a daunting total of 198 in 22 overs, England was off to a slow start as they managed just 21 runs off the first six overs of their innings.

Thorpe said, ''Pietersen should have led from the front and promoted himself to open the innings to take advantage ahead of persisting with the orthodox Ian Bell, who made 12 from 15 deliveries.

''England haven't played anywhere near what I think they could have,'' said Thorpe and added, ''That has been the most disappointing thing.

''I don't think this England side is a bad side, it shows India are a very good side. If you don't play to your potential in this country, you come off second best.

''They deserve to be 4-0 down and they got an uphill battle now, not just for the rest of the one-day series, for the test series after,'' Thorpe stated.


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