Warne on Pietersen, England and Joyce

Shane Warne, writing for The Times, writes interestingly about Kevin Pietersen (who else) – his new best friend – who he’s nicknamed PK. Yeah, exactly! He reckons…

This has been my first chance to look at him properly. I’d say he is the most dangerous batsman in the country, Freddie Flintoff included. But what has really struck me is his attitude. When he comes back into the dressing-room you wouldn’t know whether he has scored nought or a hundred. He doesn’t get fazed, just goes off to do his fitness training or joins the rest of us on the balcony and gets stuck in with the banter.

As well as being an incredible cricketer (bowler, slipper and now hundred-capable batsman!), he has the most astute cricketing brain – completely underestimated in that area of his game, I reckon. (Incidentally I hope he’ll be able to commentate or write about the game when he finally retires – although he could well coach.) So if he respects and admires a certain player, you sit up and listen. He’s obviously great pals with “PK,” and clearly thinks Pietersen’s ODI heroics are not a one off.

It also doesn’t suprise me to read he’s impressed with Joyce – who I keep banging on about.

Of the players I’ve come across this season, I’d say that Ed Joyce, of Middlesex, has most impressed me so far. He looked very calm at the crease and seemed to be in control of his game

Joyce could, in theory, play against Australia this summer. He’s Irish (like the best people are) and finally qualifies for England in July. Problem is (thank God), England has such competition for batting places at the moment that it’s hard to see where he’d fit in. Much depends on Bell – this a massive season for him, and he has a few people knocking on his door.