After England made a dream start to life under the leadership of new coach Brendon McCullum and new captain Ben Stokes with the ball, they suffered an all-too familiar collapse when it was their turn to bat.
Despite making a decent start to their innings with openers Zak Crawley and Alex Lees sharing a fifty-run partnership, England lost their final eight wickets for only 49 runs as they collapsed from 92-2 to 141 all out.
It was a familiar scene for England fans, who have been used to watching their batters crumble during a woeful run of results that has seen them win just one of their last 17 Tests. However, Pietersen believes the current line-up is filled with “players who can perform” at Test level and their struggles are simply a “confidence” problem.
Speaking on Sky Sports, Pietersen said: “I see a lot of good stuff there. You look at it and you do see a lot of good stuff but I think it’s a confidence play now.
“When you’re losing Test matches as often as these batters are losing, no matter how much you talk about a reset, restructuring, a new start under Ben Stokes – these guys like Lees, Crawley, Pope will all know how much pressure they’re under.
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“I do still see players who can perform and we see glimpses of it. There is something there.”
Former England captain Michael Vaughan, meanwhile, was more scathing in his assessment of England’s collapse. “That was the worst possible start from the England batting line-up because we are now talking about what has happened over the last year or so,” he told BBC Test Match Special.
“You can give them all the excuses in the world, but ultimately that amount of talent in the dressing room has failed to deliver.”