Kevin Pietersen plays mentor role well for England says former captain Andrew Strauss

Pietersen is providing a reassuring and encouraging presence for the clutch of emerging players

Andrew Strauss is heartened to hear Kevin Pietersen is providing a reassuring and encouraging presence for the clutch of emerging players in England's NatWest Series squad.

Before the rain-ruined third match of five against Australia in Birmingham, England limited-overs coach Ashley Giles was at pains to point out that Pietersen has been a great help in trying to nurture the new boys' talent.

Strauss had his ups and downs with Pietersen, of course, during his time as England captain - most notably when the mercurial batsman's stand-off with team management came to a head a year ago.

It is no surprise to Strauss, however, that England are also able to benefit from the other side of Pietersen's "complicated character".

Asked whether he believes the 33-year-old can flourish in his unofficial mentoring role for young players such as his new one-day international opening partner Michael Carberry, all-rounders Ben Stokes and Chris Jordan or teenage fast bowler Jamie Overton, Strauss said: "Yes, he can.

"He can be really good with young players actually.

"I think it's good that he's playing this one-day series, and him opening the batting in one-day cricket is an interesting and potentially quite explosive option for England to use.

"Given that he's had injuries, and whatever, it's quite nice for him to have a good run of cricket.

"I hope he is playing that mentoring role and playing it well."

Strauss has seen evidence of Pietersen's caring and sharing before.

"I suppose Kevin is a complicated character," he added.

"But he can be fantastic, really good and engaged in the dressing room and really go out of his way to help other people at times.

"You want to see him do that, because he's at the stage of his career now where he's got a lot to offer those young players coming through - and they all look up to him as well.

"So it's good to hear that he's doing that."

Strauss also believes it is a sensible idea for England to again deploy Pietersen as an ODI opener.

Even if they defer eventually to the established partnership of captain Alastair Cook and Ian Bell, that pair rested for a series England trail 1-0 with two to play, Strauss sees Pietersen as a viable alternative.

"Everything in the back of Ashley Giles' mind at the moment is thinking '2015 World Cup in Australia'," he said.

"So to have a look at Pietersen at the top in these sort of conditions is quite useful for him.

"Obviously, Cook and Bell have done a good job at the top themselves... so he's got options up his sleeve."

:: Andrew Strauss joined Michael Vaughan on his 500 mile charity bike ride, 'PruProtect Chance to Ride', in aid of Chance to Shine and Laureus Sport for Good Foundation. Sponsor Michael at http://www.chancetoride.co.uk

PA

News
Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
people
Sport
Thiago Silva pulls Arjen Robben back to concede a penalty
world cup 2014Brazil 0 Netherlands 3: More misery for hosts as Dutch take third place
News
Tommy Ramone performing at The Old Waldorf Nightclub in 1978 in San Francisco, California.
peopleDrummer Tommy was last surviving member of seminal band
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Several male celebrities have confessed to being on a diet, including, from left to right, Hugh Grant, Benedict Cumberbatch and Ryan Reynolds
life...and the weight loss industry is rubbing its hands in glee
Voices
Spectators photograph the Tour de France riders as they make their way through the Yorkshire countryside
voicesHoward Jacobson: Line the streets for a cycling race? You might just as well watch a swarm of wasps
Life and Style
lifeHere's one answer to an inquisitive Reddit user's question
Arts and Entertainment
'Eminem's recovery from substance abuse has made him a more potent performer, with physical charisma and energy he never had before'
arts + entsReview: Wembley Stadium ***
Sport
Joe Root and James Anderson celebrate their record-beaking partnership
cricketEngland's last-wicket stand against India rewrites the history books
News
peopleDave Legeno, the actor who played werewolf Fenrir Greyback in the Harry Potter films, has died
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice