Kevin Pietersen is still the butt of our jokes, says Graeme Swann
Saturday 03 November 2012
Graeme Swann was last night at pains to stress that Kevin Pietersen is still the butt of his fair share of jokes in the England dressing room and that the batsman's "reintegration" process is going well.
The England spinner was depicted in many quarters as one of those with whom Pietersen needed to make his peace before belatedly signing a new central contract and then being added to the squad for this tour. "Kevin's reintegration has been a seamless process," Swann said, "and it needed to happen. Everyone was wondering how it would go and whether it would be as easy as it has been.
"In the changing room, no one is safe from the humour that flies around – and he's the butt of as many jokes as Cooky [Alastair Cook]," added Swann. "He takes it fine. It's been great.
"A lot of credit has to be given to Kevin for the way he has come in. The dressing room is a very happy place this week. That's what we need to be; if we are going to have a chance of beating India over here."
As for Swann's own well-being, he knows he will have to deal with match-winning expectations in these conditions but also be patient at times too. "There's always pressure on the spinner when you play in India, because people assume in the subcontinent all the wickets will be big turners," he said.
"You've just got to deal with that in your own way, because we know that a lot of the wickets over here are exceptional batting surfaces – at least to start, and then turn later.
"Often in the first innings you have to take a more defensive role and support the seamers and then later on, if there is turn and bounce, you come into your own."
He is hoping for a happy return to the country where, after several years outside the England reckoning, he marked his debut with two wickets in his first over. Since that entrance in Chennai, he has rarely looked back – and is now just one short of the great Jim Laker's career tally of 193 Test wickets, the most by any England off-spinner.
Stuart Broad was set to captain England for the first time since his elevation as Cook's Test deputy in England's second warm-up match which gets under way this morning. Cook is being rested as the other batsmen are given a chance for time in the middle.
Pogba to Chelsea: Blues set to smash British spending record with £70m midfielder and £34m John Stones
John Stones appears to jump over ball as Everton concede goal against Barnsley
Club Brugge 0 Manchester United 4 player ratings: Wayne Rooney scores hat-trick, but who impressed in Champions League tie?
David De Gea to Real Madrid: Paul Scholes blasts 'out of order' Manchester United goalkeeper for missing start of the season
Javier Hernandez: Great night for Manchester United, terrible night for Chicharito
- 1 Video of Irish 'professional boxer' fighting Istanbul neighbourhood goes viral in Turkey
- 3 Toby Sheldon: Justin Bieber lookalike found dead in motel room
- 4 Russia 'accidentally reveals' number of its soldiers killed in eastern Ukraine
- 5 Pregnant teenager Neysi Perez 'wakes up in coffin' a day after her funeral
Dresden riots: Protesters in Germany attack refugee buses shouting 'foreigners out'
France train shooting: US soldiers speak of the moment they stopped gunman and 'beat him until he was unconscious'
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn accused of 'deluding' young supporters with 'claptrap'
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith calls for urgent ESA overhaul as part of drive to cut down welfare costs