Kevin Pietersen wary of Sri Lanka heat

 

Kevin Pietersen believes the searing heat will be the biggest challenge facing England in their Test series against Sri Lanka, but admits his old nemesis of left-arm spin must also be tamed.

England have worked hard at acclimatising to the soaring temperatures and draining humidity by training in the middle of the day but Pietersen ranks it as the most physically demanding trip of his career.

He is also aware that Rangana Herath, Sri Lanka's first-choice spinner, is waiting to test the theory that Pietersen has a blind spot against slow left-armers but he is clear about which problem he is most concerned about.

"Sri Lanka have magnificent players - obviously the likes of (Mahela) Jayawardene, (Kumar) Sangakkara and (Tillakaratne) Dilshan - but their attack is very good too," he said.

"They've got a left-arm spinner, Herath, who bowls wicket to wicket and you saw against Pakistan what a guy like Abdur Rehman did to us.

"Left-arm spin is a huge part of the game now and it's not going to be easy at all.

"But it's not really the spinners (we have to worry about) out here, it's the heat. I that will be the biggest threat to us.

"It's unbelievable, make no bones about that, but it's something we have to try and get over as quickly as possible.

"I'm trying to just not do too much and to conserve a lot of energy, not run around like a crazy fool like you do in England or Australia or South Africa, where you can afford to do that.

"It's something we have to try and control. On days off we need to get out, swim in the sea, spend some time in the sun and let your body get used to it.

"If you only spend time in the dressing room or in the ground and you try and take conditions in like that it's not going to work. You need to get out as much as you can."

England's pre-Test preparations suffered something of a blow yesterday when it was revealed Ravi Bopara is suffering with a side strain that will rule him out of bowling in the Test series.

The Essex all-rounder was favourite for the number six spot and was expected to contribute some relief overs of medium pace.

Tim Bresnan and Samit Patel are on hand if England decide they need that extra bowling option, but Pietersen does not think Bopara's injury will hinder his selection prospects.

"I'm not sure it's a big setback, because he's hardly going to take you seven wickets in a Test match," he said.

"He might bowl you four overs (in an innings). I can bowl those overs, Jonathan Trott can bowl those four overs.

"It's not a massive setback."

Pietersen was pleased by the tourists' warm-up victory against a Sri Lankan Development XI this week, a match that saw Andrew Strauss and Jonathan Trott score centuries and four other players - including himself - pass 50.

"The guys really stood up and and everybody went out and got runs," he said.

"It was really, really good. We didn't play very well in Dubai in the Test matches but the batters went away and turned things around."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Teeth should be brushed twice a day to prevent tooth decay
education
News
Bryan Cranston as Walter White, in the acclaimed series 'Breaking Bad'
news
Sport
footballChelsea 6 Maribor 0: Blues warm up for Premier League showdown with stroll in Champions League - but Mourinho is short of strikers
News
Those who were encouraged to walk in a happy manner remembered less negative words
science
Arts and Entertainment
Princess Olga in 'You Can't Get the Staff'
tvReview: The anachronistic aristocrats, it seemed, were just happy to have some attention
News
Renee Zellweger as Bridget Jones
i100
Life and Style
tech

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

News
There have been various incidents of social media users inadvertently flouting the law
news

Life and Style
Stack ‘em high?: quantity doesn’t always trump quality, as Friends of the Earth can testify
techThe proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
News
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
i100
Sport
CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty
footballCSKA Moscow 2 Manchester City 2: Premier League champions let two goal lead slip in Russia
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink
12 best children's shoes

Perfect for leaf-kicking: 12 best children's shoes

Find footwear perfect to keep kids' feet protected this autumn
Anderlecht vs Arsenal: Gunners' ray of light Aaron Ramsey shines again

Arsenal’s ray of light ready to shine again

Aaron Ramsey’s injury record has prompted a club investigation. For now, the midfielder is just happy to be fit to face Anderlecht in the Champions League
Comment: David Moyes' show of sensitivity thrown back in his face by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Moyes’ show of sensitivity thrown back in his face... by Ferguson

Manchester United legend tramples on successor who resisted criticising his inheritance
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015

UK city beats Vienna, Paris and New York to be ranked seventh in world’s best tourist destinations - but it's not London