I knew I would come good - Pietersen
Kevin Pietersen signalled his return to form with a magnificent double century in the second Ashes Test - then insisted he never lost belief that he would end his barren run.
Resuming on 85, Pietersen wasted little time bringing up his first hundred since March 2009, before pressing on to make an unbeaten 213 at Adelaide.
His thrilling innings was the centrepiece of England’s 551 for four, giving them a lead of 306 at the end of a third day which saw no play after tea due to rain.
With Andrew Strauss contemplating an overnight declaration, Pietersen admitted it was as important for the team to be in a strong position as it was for him to rediscover his best batting form.
“You go through tough times in your career; it’s how you get through that,” he said.
“I knew doing the basics and keeping things simple I would come good. To get some time in the middle in this fixture has been great.”
Pietersen was keen to concentrate on the team and warned not to be complacent about the poor showing so far from Australia.
He added: “It’s about the team’s position and we need to now look forward to hopefully winning a Test match.
“I’ve never seen Australia like this before, but the Ashes is still 0-0. Australia will only get better and we’ll have to get better as well.”
Pietersen also paid tribute to Nashua Dolphins coach Graham Ford, with whom he worked on his technique during a stint in his native South Africa before the Ashes.
“It (my confidence) came back then,” Pietersen said. “He just went through bits and pieces I had forgotten.
“I knew that I was in a good place, mentally I was in a good place. I got myself into some really good nick and started thinking simple again.”
Pietersen has had to rein in his nervous energy over the past week - waiting with his pads on and next into bat for 11 hours in all, during the first Test in Brisbane and again here while Alastair Cook and Jonathan Trott shared an unbroken stand of 329 and then another of 173.
“You could probably see by the way I started. I was trying to get to 50 in five balls,” he said.
“It was a long time to wait; I’ve never done that in my career before. But how amazing - it was absolutely incredible.
“It’s brilliant to watch, brilliant to see - and long may it continue.”
Despite the loss of the evening session, Pietersen remains optimistic over England’s victory chances.
“Obviously the rain has altered a few of our plans,” he admitted. “We had a pretty clear idea of what we wanted to do this afternoon and the rain didn’t help us. We’ll just have to go back to the drawing board now and discuss a few more options.
“There’s a 10 o’clock start in the morning so we’ll get an extra eight overs there and we’ll just see where we go.
“Hopefully the weather doesn’t interfere too much more with this fixture and we can push hard for a win.
“There’s a lot of spin out there and I think Swanny (Graeme Swann) is going to play a huge part tomorrow and the next day.
“It’s not that easy driving, the wicket is quite two-paced and with the new ball there’s a lot of bounce there.
“If we bowl to plans - which we have been doing very successfully over the last few months - then we can get 10 wickets.”