IPL great for Stokes' development – Pietersen
Kevin Pietersen believes Ben Stokes' Indian Premier League experience will benefit England across all formats in the long run.
Ben Stokes' impressive Indian Premier League displays will make him a better player for England, according to former international Kevin Pietersen.
The England vice-captain became the most expensive overseas player in IPL history when he was bought for £1.7million by Rising Pune Supergiant.
He has helped to repay some of that sizeable free with a solid debut campaign in the Twenty20 tournament, Stokes taking 12 wickets at 26.33 and scoring 316 runs – including an unbeaten 103 against Gujarat Lions, the fourth highest individual score of the tournament.
Stokes' involvement was approved by the England and Wales Cricket Board after the governing body previously vetoed Test players appearing in the competition.
And Pietersen believes the change of heart could have long-term advantages for the national team, the outspoken former Test captain saying Stokes' game will have improved because of the experience.
"He has had the most brilliant campaign," Pietersen told Sky Sports. "I think everybody knew he was going to play well. He went for a big number, but the big number didn't affect him.
"He's just a free spirit. He goes out there and he's just enjoyed the occasion. This would have been great for his development as a cricketer, playing with those players, [being] coached by Mahela Jayawardene.
"It's just incredible for your learning and your development as a player to play in these conditions."