New Delhi: The whole of England is hoping that Kevin Pietersen's first child has the same sense of timing as his or her father. The dashing batsman will fly back to England for the birth of his first child after his electric knock sunk South Africa.
Pietersen has made it clear, if all goes well, he will be back for England's semi-final.
"It's my first child so it's a hell of an exciting time for me," Pietersen told Sky Sports 2.
"I'll be dashing across the Atlantic and hopefully dashing back," added Pietersen, who before the tournament had come to an agreement with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) allowing him to dash back at a moment's notice to be with his pop star wife Jessica.
"I'm flying back to London in the next 24 hours and hoping everything goes well and according to plan, there's no complications," Pietersen said.
"If we get through to the semi-finals, I'll come in the day before the semi-finals."
England have almost made it to the semis with two wins in two games in the Super Eights stage. Their game against New Zealand, which Pietersen will miss, will only be of academic interest to them. With a strong net run-rate, England only have to ensure they don't lose by a huge margin to the Kiwis.
Pietersen on Saturday played perhaps the innings of the tournament in Bridgetown.
Though he may not be able to compete with Suresh Raina and Mahela Jayawardene in terms of the volume of runs, but it has to be the most powerful knock for its impact on South Africa. The Proteas misread the pitch and paid a heavy price for being rigid in their selection. Pietersen blighted the South Africa pace attack by launching into a brutal assault.
Pietersen has now won two in a row for England and has single-handedly taken them to the brink of a semi-final spot.
If Pietersen does not make it in time for England's semi-final spot, it will be a moral win for their opposition even before they step on to the field.
For now, it is over to Junior Pietersen, on whom a whole nation's hopes rest.
With inputs from AFP