Axed England batsman Kevin Pietersen has revealed he tried to calm Jonathan Trott after first noticing the problems that forced his early Ashes departure.
Trott left Australia after the first Ashes Test last November due to a stress-related illness, with Pietersen apparently the first on tour to spot his teammate was struggling to handle the pressure.
Pietersen has also claimed he was well liked in the England dressing-room, despite reports to the contrary following the England and Wales Cricket Board’s decision to call time on his international career in the wake of the 5-0 whitewash.
“He has said that I was the first person to notice his problem,” Pietersen told the Times of India, after arriving in the sub-continent ahead of the new Indian Premier League tournament.
“I told him that he needed to calm down and he was putting too much pressure on himself.
“Contrary to popular belief, I have a very good relationship with most of the guys in the English dressing room. I like to look after them.
“If someone is struggling, I like to go up and put an arm around him.”
Trott began his bid to return to the England team earlier this month after making a pre-season return with Warwickshire.
The right-hander made just four runs in his comeback friendly against Gloucestershire in Birmingham, before again failing to make double figures on Tuesday as his teammates otherwise piled on 7-388 against Oxford University.
Despite not yet rediscovering his batting touch, Pietersen is confident Trott is on the right track to recovering his England place.
“He is doing quite well now,” Pietersen added.
Pietersen will begin life after England when the new IPL season starts next week.
The 33-year-old will play his first game for the Delhi Daredevils in Sharjah on April 17.