Ashes 2013-14: Ian Bell backs Kevin Pietersen to fire England past 300

Ashes 2013-14: Ian Bell is optimistic Kevin Pietersen can fire England past 300-run mark on day two of the fourth Test

Ian Bell backed Kevin Pietersen to fire England past the 300-run mark after the tourists finished on 226-6 at the end of day one of the fourth Test.

Michael Carberry and Joe Root helped England reach 96-1 after Alastair Cook had been ousted tamely by the Australians before his fellow opener was bowled by Shane Watson.

Hopefully, with Kev still there, maybe we’ll get over 300

Ian Bell

Shortly after, Root was caught by Brad Haddin off the bowling of Ryan Harris to leave England on 106-3 before Bell and Pietersen forged a fourth-wicket stand.

The former posted 27 runs before he fell, whilst Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow could only manage 14 and 10 runs respectively – and Bell admitted England had underperformed on a good batting wicket.

“A lot of guys got starts, so it’s disappointing no one got a big score,” said Bell.

“On that surface, we’re probably too few runs for a few too many wickets. Hopefully, with Kev still there, maybe we’ll get over 300.

“We have to find the right balance of putting pressure on the bowler. You can’t just stand there and try to survive, but sometimes you can only hit what you get given.

“There’s no arguments with the pitch. It felt a little bit English this morning, but as the sun came out it was fantastic to bat on.”

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