1. Article by: Posted: 5th June 2015 In: Cricket News Replies: 4 comments

    Since Kevin Pietersen was axed from the England set up last year, it seems hardly a week goes by where he doesn’t register his interest in being back in the side. He has repeatedly said he was disappointed at being left out and that he’d love to play international cricket. “I’m desperate to play for England again,” he divulged after nailing a triple century for Surrey.


    Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic License by  NAPARAZZI

    Even that wasn’t enough, and it looks increasingly unlikely that he’ll enter the fold once more before his career comes to an end. The worst part is, it wasn’t even Pietersen the cricketer that was the main cause, rather his status as an antagonist and likely some of the things he opened up about in his autobiography. It’s hard to see an athlete suffer because there are people who potentially don’t agree with him outside of his performances.

    England come into the next Ashes series as major underdogs – when this article was produced, betfair have the Aussies 1.15 on to retain the urn – and a lot of that is down to a lack of firepower.  As the saga continues it’s likely to get more hostile. To counteract that, we’re going to remember KP in a more positive light by looking at some of his finest moments in the country’s whites.

    Becoming England’s top run scorer

    In August of 2013, Pietersen really found his moment to become England’s top run scorer across all forms of the game. He hammered home a century in the third Test of the Ashes against Australia and edged past Graham Gooch. That’s an enormous moment for anybody but the style the South Africa born batsmen did it in just made it even more special.

    The Ashes 2005

    KP always seemed to find form when it mattered and he picked out his biggest innings when the pressure was on. As a relative newcomer to the England team in 2005, people weren’t expecting to rely on him so heavily. They had to though. Pietersen came through the series as one of the key players. He top scored the first two innings after some shaky batting from his teammates, and followed it with a vital 72 in the second Test.

    He really came to prominence again in the second innings of the final Test and put in a heroic performance that pretty much gave England victory. His first Test century came as he closed out at 158 with seven sixes and earned himself Man of the Match as well as making him the top run scorer of the Ashes with 473.

    ICC number one ranked batsman

    Kevin Pietersen by nic_r, on Flickr

    Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic License by  nic_r

    The 2007 World Cup really saw the realisation of Pietersen as a dominant international force. Though England weren’t ultimately going to be successful, failing to reach the semi-finals, KP
    became the ICC’s number one ranked ODI batsman
     after innings that included a century against West Indies, 104 off 122 against Australia, and useful contributions against New Zealand, Kenya, Sri Lanka and Ireland. Again, it was the big stages and the bigger encounters that really forced him to deliver. Any team would have loved to have him swinging for six high up on their order – being cemented as the best in the world really secured that notion.

    Outside of these specific instances that showed his class, Pietersen was also partly responsible for bringing a whole new generation into the sport. His bullying style of batting was entertaining, the boundaries always flowed and there was never a boring innings. Though he was prone to lapses in concentration and spells of inconsistency, most of the prodigious talents across all sports have been.

    Let’s remember him for the amazing innings and thank him for the contributions. Don’t resign him to a place in history where he’s not one of England’s greatest ever, because he is. Even an unfriendly face in his former captain Andrew Strauss admitted that.

  2. Article by: Posted: 5th June 2015 In: Cricket Games News Replies: 5 comments

    Big Ant Studios have announced that the first of the incremental patches for users of the Steam version of the game will launch today.

    The biggest new feature is the addition of co-op play, this patch will only add an option for two players (either online or locally) versus the AI, with future ones to add co-op against human players, but it is a chance for those who have been hanging on for co-op to at least take a look at the direction things are headed.

    While multiplayer online co-op isn’t yet included, Big Ant have mentioned that improvements to online play are part of the patch. This is really something that we will only get a better picture of once the patch is out there and people who have had problems playing in the past can give it another go.

    The smallest change is perhaps the most important one however. A simulate button has been added to career mode, saving players from having to enter the pause menu to simulate, but more importantly, it also allows you to simulate when your batsman is off strike. Certainly I find myself running out the AI trying to push for a single to get back on strike, so this button will come in handy when I’m playing.

    Another career mode change is the addition of a difficulty option – letting you directly pick your career difficulty, rather than the previous and varying attempts at the automatic changing of difficulty at various points of your career.

    This is all however just a start of the process, the first of what will likely be many updates as part of the process of working towards patch 3 – no details are yet available on what the focus of the next update will be, or when that will launch, but PlanetCricket will bring you details as soon as we know.

    Just a quick note again for those on consoles – you won’t get these small updates. On PC, Big Ant can directly and immediately update the game, which lets them quickly make changes and fixes and send them to users. On consoles that process is more difficult, and requires the console maker to test and approve the updates first. Because of that, those on console (that means PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One users) will simply get the one update at the end of this process – termed “Patch 3″.

    As we don’t know how many of these smaller updates will happen first, we have no estimate on when the final patch will release on consoles, but it is coming, and the feedback and testing that can happen on PC right now will improve the finished product.

  3. Article by: Posted: 28th May 2015 In: Cricket Games News Replies: 8 comments

    While we have had previous confirmation of Big Ant Studios working on a sequel to Don Bradman Cricket 14, today their official twitter account has dropped the first confirmation that the sequel will release in 2016 into a reply,

    The previous confirmation came through a Digitally Downloaded interview with Big Ant CEO Ross Symons – where he highlighted major features such as a new Stadium Creator. Posts on our forums also make mention of priorities like major improvements to the commentary in the game. With little else known at this point, a wishlist thread for the next edition is here, if you’d like to give your thoughts on what you would like to see.

    The tweet also makes mention of the imminent launch of new updates for Don Bradman Cricket 14, with those being previously announced on the PlanetCricket Forums, along with an update for Xbox One specific issues.

    As with previous updates to DBC, the PC version of the game will get a lot of smaller updates first, letting Big Ant test and get feedback for the changes. After that process is finished, a finalised “Patch 3″ will then go through the submission process for a release to the console versions –  which means Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 all getting one big update containing everything that will be in all the smaller updates.

    There aren’t specific details yet regarding what fixes and features will be included in the final Patch 3, however following along with the PC updates will fill in the picture as we go, plus there’s the known addition of Co-Op play to the game, which will allow two players to play on the same team against local or online opponents.


  4. Article by: Posted: 12th May 2015 In: The PlanetCricket View Replies: No comments

    Dear Michael Vaughan,

    This morning you said to the world via twitter:
    “Anyone else struggling to explain to their 9 yr old that KP isn’t allowed to play for England?”

    I have some suggestions for what you might say.
    You can start off by telling him why you refused to take the Director of Cricket job. He is your son, so you can probably do a little better than saying the “role wasn’t for you” while denying that it was to do with your media commitments or golf schedule. I think he would like to know why it is when you had the chance to help your country and put your money where your mouth is you passed.

    It’s all very well criticising Andrew Strauss’s decision but you knew he was going to do that. Everyone knew what he was going to do. There are tribesmen in undiscovered parts of the Amazon who knew what Andrew Strauss was going to do. You were given an opportunity that mere fans will never get. As you yourself said, it something is important you find a way to make it work.

    You passed and with your decision went my respect for your opinion. I’ve enjoyed reading your articles about England and I think you were right about the causes and right about the solution. Instead you have left us with Andrew Strauss. And without Kevin Pietersen.
    So therefore I would go with, “I’m sorry son. It’s my fault, but I hear Alastair Cook is an exciting player.”

    Yours sincerely,

    England Fan

  5. Article by: Posted: 5th May 2015 In: The PlanetCricket View Replies: 2 comments

    My love of cricket developed in the late 80s and early 90s. Appropriately enough, given who we’ve just played and who is still to come this summer, the first bits of cricket I can distinctly remember are England’s 1988 series against the West Indies and the 1989 Ashes: both humiliating 4-0 defeats. (It says nothing for my cricketing judgement that out of a bowling line-up including Marshall, Ambrose and Walsh, I recall bowling to my older brother in the back garden and saying “I’m Patrick Patterson”.)

    So it is not that I am a fair-weather fan, or a “new” fan used only to success: the particular lows that stand out for me include our failure to dismiss Danny “Duckman” Morrison in 1997, Nasser Hussain being booed on the Oval balcony in 1999, almost any World Cup since 1992, and dropping Jack Russell for Richard for Blakey in 1993. Despite all that, I didn’t just follow cricket but fell in love with it. The period had some highs too – I remember Gooch scoring a triple hundred against India in 1990 and carrying his bat against West Indies in 91, Atherton and Russell’s defiance in Johannesburg in 95, finally beating West Indies in a series in 2000… Even Ashes series were not completely depressing – Thorpe and Hussain’s stand at Edgbaston in 1997, where we took the lead in an Ashes for the first time since 1986/7, and Goughie’s hat trick at the MCG in 1999 were particular high points.

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