Pietersen keen to improve against turning ball
It may be a bit of a slogfest, but Kevin Pietersen believes his stint in the Indian Premier League will help him sort out his batting against spin.
The England squad has returned home following a tour of Sri Lanka, but Pietersen is staying on the subcontinent to play for the Delhi Daredevils in the fifth edition of the Twenty20 cricket circus.
The batsman, who scored 151 and 42 not out in England’s eight-wicket win over Sri Lanka in the second Test, struggled against the turning ball in the side’s five Tests against Pakistan and Sri Lanka this winter.
So the South African-born 31-year-old is relishing extra practice in the nets and sees the opportunity to go to India as a brilliant way to get even better.
“The great thing about the IPL is I can just spend hours in the nets,” Pietersen (right) said.
“You’ve always got people wanting to bowl to you and wanting to competitively get you out in the nets so I see it as an opportunity to just improve my playing of spin bowling and improving my technique here in the subcontinent. I think it’s a massive bonus, I’m very lucky.”
Alastair Cook claims England’s eight-wicket win over Sri Lanka in Colombo proves their batsmen are back to their brilliant best.
Cook and Co were bowled out for under 200 four times in six innings during their 3-0 loss to Pakistan in the UAE. And they didn’t fare much better in the first Test in Sri Lanka when they collapsed to defeat in Galle, losing their last six wickets for just 31 runs.
However, the series-levelling win in the capital saw England post a first innings total of 460, and for Cook that means the batsmen have got over their winter woes.
“We set out this winter to crack sub-continental conditions,” the defiant opener said.
“But we’ve learnt as a side again. We’ve taken a few steps back but sometimes you have to do that in your career.”