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West Indies v England
Barbados, 21 April 2007

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Kevin Pietersen
Pietersen hits the ball away through mid-wicket during his century
Man of the Match Kevin Pietersen predicted good times ahead for England after they rounded off their World Cup campaign by beating hosts West Indies.

Pietersen made 100 off 91 balls as England gave Duncan Fletcher a winning end to his eight-year spell as coach.

"I'm just pleased for Fletch that we got the victory on his last day.

"We've had a disappointing winter, but I'm looking forward to the next couple of years - they could be very good ones for us," said Pietersen.

The match was also the last for West Indies skipper Brian Lara and England counterpart Michael Vaughan was quick to pay tribute to his talent and achievements.

"He's a genius. There are not many geniuses in the game and we're losing one today, so we all wish him well. He's scored a lot of runs against us and it will be nice to play against the West Indies without him," said Vaughan.

On Pietersen, Vaughan predicted he had the potential to eventually join Lara among the all-time greats of the game.

Fletcher chats to video analyst Mark Garraway
It was business as usual for England coach Duncan Fletcher

"He has a huge amount of talent and a lot of skill to go with that, his hundred was a great effort. He has plenty more runs in the locker and he could end up being similar to Lara if he carries on working hard," he commented.

Despite the result, Vaughan offered a frank assessment of England's performances in the Caribbean, adding: "It was nice to get a victory, and nice to have a fantastic crowd here and I hope everybody has been entertained.

"We have won the game but we've got to be realistic and say we haven't played as well as we should have done throughout this tournament.

"At stages today we showed what a side we can be, but there were stages when we also showed we're a bit rough around the edges as well."

He added: "What was important was that we know we play West Indies [at home] in a few weeks time and we wanted to get one up on them going into that Test series.

"I know it's a one-day game, but we wanted to take a look at their players and we wanted to play well."

Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad
Stuart Broad (right) hit the winning runs for England

Vaughan had a measure of personal consolation in making 79, his highest score of the tournament, after earlier picking up 3-39 with his off-spin.

"I thought Michael Vaughan started the innings fantastically. That's the Vaughny we like - that's the Vaughny that's really positive, that's the way I like to see Michael Vaughan playing," Pietersen commented.

Wicket-keeper Paul Nixon also played a vital part in England's win, making 38 before he was bowled in the final over, leaving county team-mate Stuart Broad to collect the winning runs.

"That was an amazing game of cricket. There was some tremendous batting from West Indies. We had to do something, we'd all talked about Duncan Fletcher [leaving] and it means a lot for him," said Nixon.

"The lads paced the game so well. Michael Vaughan played beautifully, Kevin Pietersen came in and played magnificently and then the Leicestershire partnership finished it off."

Legend Lara to end Windies career
19 Apr 07 |  West Indies
Fletcher to quit after World Cup
19 Apr 07 |  England


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