Swann says KP row gave Cook chance to prepare well for India series

London: England off spinner Graeme Swann believes the Kevin Pietersen controversy has deflected attention from the newly appointed Test captain Alastair Cook, which would work in his favour, as it has given him a chance to prepare for the India series quietly and calmly.

Cook’s one-day form improved massively when he took over the captaincy, and despite a phenomenal record of 20 Test centuries by the age of 27, Swann believes his batting record could even improve after succeeding Andrew Strauss in the five-day game.

England team arrived in India on Sunday bidding to win a Test series there for the first time since 1985 on the back of a miserable year which has seen them tumble from the top of the world rankings.

Swann believes the ruckus over the South African-born star could actually benefit Cook during the India series.

“If all of the ­shenanigans had not ­happened, all of the focus would have been on Captain Cook’s first tour as full-time Test captain,” a daily quoted Swann, as saying.

“So it might be the best thing that could have ­happened to Cooky. It has allowed him to ­prepare ­quietly and calmly and go about things in his own ­exceptional way,” he added.


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