England batting sensation, Kevin Pietersen, who is currently playing with the Delhi Daredevils in this year’s edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), has revealed that negative attitudes towards the tournament back home may be caused by jealousy.
The IPL was an instant hit with many international cricketers when it began in 2008, but, has failed to attract much attention in England.
The Indian media quoted Pietersen as saying: “It (the IPL) is very much struggling to find acceptance back home, it saddens me because I have had an amazing time at the IPL, and it’s down to a lot of jealousy I think which is sad. It saddens me all the negative publicity the IPL gets in the (British) media, I don’t know why.”
Pietersen’s comments came after the Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack attribute the influence of Twenty20 cricket on India’s recent downfall in Test cricket, where they lost eight consecutive matches in England and Australia.
The editor of the Almanack, Lawrence Booth, wrote: “The disintegration of India’s feted batting line-up has coincided with the rise of a Twenty20-based nationalism, the growth of private marketeers and high-level conflicts of interest, it is a perfect storm. And the global game sits unsteadily in the eye. India, your sport needs you.”
Pietersen, who is the only major England star in this year’s IPL, stated that the tournament would be beneficial for him, as he would be able to get used to the conditions when England tour India for a Test and ODI series later this year.
“It will benefit the team (England), especially because we will be touring India later in the year,” he said.
“Playing another month in the subcontinent honing my skills, training with the spinners and practicing, I consider myself so very fortunate,” he added.