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Pietersen's 'thumbs up' for Strauss

02 December 2016

Melbourne Stars and former England batsman commends work of his former skipper in role with ECB

Kevin Pietersen has praised his former skipper Andrew Strauss for England's progress in Test cricket under his watch as the ECB's Director of Cricket.

Pietersen and Strauss have had a turbulent relationship over the years, stretching back to a texting scandal during England's series against South Africa in 2012.

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Strauss was named England's Director of Cricket in May 2015 and quickly put an end to Pietersen's hopes of an international comeback that year, citing a lack of "trust" as a major reason behind his decision.

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But Pietersen says he's moved on from his personal issues with Strauss and says England's recent progress in Test cricket is a testament to his former teammate.

"He's actually doing a very good job for England. He's stuck to his principles and he's not deviated," Pietersen told cricket.com.au earlier this month as part of a Q&A session with Australian allrounder Glenn Maxwell.

"And England have done OK; they've won against Australia, they've beaten South Africa in South Africa and they've got a huge series right now against India.

"I think he's done an OK job. He's a current player and I like that about 'Straussy'. He's played over 100 Test matches and so he gets the modern-day thinking.

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 "He doesn't really get the shorter formats of the game because he hasn't played too much of that, but he does get the modern-day way, which I think is really good for a position like that.

"I'm thumbs up with Straussy. We've had our issues but everyone has issues with certain people. It doesn't bother me now.

"I live with a smile on my face all day, every day."

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Pietersen also shared his thoughts on former South African cricketer Galum Bodi, who was convicted of match-fixing earlier this year and banned from the game for 20 years.

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Pietersen and Bodi have a long history; Pietersen says it was Bodi's selection ahead of him for South African provincial side Natal in 2000, which came about due to a racial quota, which sparked his life-changing decision to emigrate to England.

But 16 years on, Pietersen is philosophical about the role Bodi played in his career.

"He actually helped me in my career," the 36-year-old said.

"He presented me with an opportunity that I needed to take and grab with both hands and he's basically helped me with where I am today."

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