Thanks to Hampshire, Pietersen reads Warne~~s flipper

Published: Friday, May 6, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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London:Though England's latest batting sensation Kevin Pietersen is not so sure of an Ashes berth, he has already picked Shane Warne's flipper.

Pietersen who plays for English County Hampshire which is captained by none other than the genial leg-spinner is already ahead of his team-mates after monitoring Warne from the slip cordon at Hampshire.

"I'm gauging a few tips to how he tries to get batsmen out and on the balls he bowls," Pietersen told Sydney Radio.

"I picked the flipper well last year, and he's commented on it. I don't really have a problem with picking him, but it's a different story when you stand up in the big arena."

Warne's flipper who created ripples in the English camp with the 'ball-of-the century' that bamboozled Mike Gatting in 1992 Ashes has evolved into a more subtle and less fearsome version.

It is not only an eye for Warne's variations that have aided South Africa born Pietersen's development at the Rose Bowl. Pietersen said his sledging had improved standing next to Warne and Simon Katich.

"I had chilled out, but I'm picking it up again playing with these two," he said.

"It's amusing ... It keeps you on your toes. The opposition certainly know that you're up for a battle and I'm sure that the English and all of us will know that we're up for a battle as soon as the Aussies land in the country."

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