London: England coach Andy Flower has said controversial batsman Kevin Pietersen must be very proud of his contribution in team’s historic Test series win in India, and added that the South Africa born batsman’s contract extension is not an issue any more.
“The contract won’t be a problem, Kevin has been excellent in every way,” the Telegraph quoted Flower, as saying.
“We don’t all always get on with people all of the time, in any walk of life, and everyone has made an effort to make it work.
It’s been really good fun and he should be very proud of the way he’s operated out here both as an individual and as a player,” he added.
Most head coaches tend to be pragmatists when it comes to awkward but talented players and principled though Flower is, he knows the value of an innings like the 186 Pietersen scored in the second Test in Mumbai, which floored India with its audacity.
“In that Test he showed real skill in Indian conditions on a pitch that turned on the first day,” Flower said.
“For him to score as quickly as he did there and put such pressure on the opposition bowlers really helped us turn the series around,” he added.
“He also scored a 73 and a 54 in the series, important innings, and he’s been excellent in the field and in the dressing room,” he said.
Pietersen’s reintegration might not have been possible had Andrew Strauss still been captain, but Alastair Cook also knows England are better off with him than without him.