India v England: Pietersen was the difference in second Test – Cook
India v England: Alastair Cook believes the tourists' controversial batsman Kevin Pietersen was the difference between the two sides in the second Test
Alastair Cook believes Kevin Pietersen was “the difference” between England and India in their nine-wicket victory in the second Test on Monday.
Pietersen smashed a superb 186 in the first innings to give England a 86-run lead, and with India all out of 142, the tourists wrapped an historic win as Cook and Nick Compton scored the 58 required.
It leaves the series all square at 1-1 ahead of the third Test in Kolkata, and the England captain heaped praise on match-winners Monty Panesar, Pietersen and Graeme Swann.
“That’s why you want him in the team, there are not many people in the world who could do what Kevin did [on Sunday],” said Cook.
“It was the difference between the two teams, because those runs and how quickly he scored them, took the game away from India.
“The way Monty and Swann bowled. Especially in the second innings we didn’t want to be chasing too many with that wicket.
“They were under pressure to perform, and they did.”
He added: “I think it’s the job of the spinner to work out the wicket. I thought the way Monty and Swann did that was fantastic.
“The way they bowled on Sunday afternoon was fantastic. They stood up to the challenge and took the wickets.”