Pietersen inspires resurgent England
England claimed a morale-lifting six-wicket victory in the solitary Twenty20 against India to end their dismal tour in encouraging fashion in Kolkata.
India elected to bat first but could only post a paltry 120 for nine from their 20 overs as Steven Finn ended a hugely impressive tour with three wickets while Tim Bresnan chipped in with two strikes.
Kevin Pietersen - who returned quickly from a fractured thumb - inspired Graeme Swann's side with a 39-ball 53 which included three sixes to lead England to their first win in India since 2006 and consolidate their status at the top of the world rankings.
On the same worn pitch which saw the tourists lose all 10 wickets for 47 runs to complete their 5-0 one-day international series drubbing four days ago, England had their hosts in early trouble on five for two, after India had won the toss.
Wicketkeeper Craig Kieswetter produced two stunning diving catches as openers Ajinkya Rahane and Robin Uthappa both departed, for a single between them, to Finn and Bresnan respectively.
Bresnan followed Finn's opening-over success with a wicket maiden but Suresh Raina got India moving by clubbing Finn for a straight six from the final ball of his second over, and Virat Kohli took two fours off Bresnan's next.
Kohli soon mistimed a big hit at Bresnan to deep midwicket, but Raina appeared to be waiting for Swann to introduce himself and cut a four and slog-swept a six off the off-spinner in a first over which cost 16 runs.
Raina and Manoj Tiwary kept running twos to Swann's deep-set fields until Samit Patel capped a fine mid-innings spell by bowling the right-hander, mowing across the line.
Then Finn struck twice in successive balls, Raina cutting straight to point and Ravindra Jadeja edging on - and at 74 for six in the 12th over, much appeared to depend on the next stand between Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Yusuf Pathan.
Ravi Bopara took advantage of a tricky surface to take two wickets in three balls, bowling Pathan and Praveen Kumar in a double-wicket maiden.
But Dhoni, the scourge of England over the past two weeks, was dropped by Jonny Bairstow when he launched a skier off Jade Dernbach in the final over - and duly smashed the next ball for six, as he and number 10 R Ashwin gave their team a chance.
Alex Hales and Kieswetter scored 11 and 12 respectively as England made a fairly tepid start to their reply, with the excellent Ravindra Jadeja claiming exceptional figures of one for nine off his four overs.
But a third-wicket partnership of 60 between Pietersen and Samit Patel ensured that the tourists were always on top of the required run-rate, and India were held under the cosh.
Pietersen produced a staggering array of strokes including a magnificent switch-hit for six and a scoop over wicketkeeper Dhoni's head for four in what was a match-winning knock.
Patel compiled an intelligent 21 to provide the ideal support for man-of-the-match Pietersen, and it was left for Ravi Bopara, who scored 14, and Jonny Bairstow to lead England to their target with eight balls remaining.
It was a strange sight to see Andy Flower's side celebrate with champagne after enduring such a torrid tour, but it was at least an encouraging T20 performance from the tourists and one which sees them travel home as the world's number one outfit in the format.