Root’s wife is due to give birth in July, putting the skipper at risk of missing out on one of the 3 behind-closed-doors Tests with the West Indies next month.
The batsman has already gone on record as saying he would back Stokes to do a good job in his absence. Still, Pietersen beware about the mercurial all-rounder assuming even more responsibility.
The three-time Ashes winner was speaking from experience, having not enjoyed his short stint as captain in 2008, and would prefer Jos Buttler to take over.
“Do I want to see Ben Stokes change from who he is and the current player he is? Probably not, Jos Buttler would be my guy,” he told talkSPORT.
“The entertainers and the guys that have to carry the mantle in the team sometimes aren’t the best captains and sometimes struggle with the extra added pressure.”
“As a player, you are looked at completely differently until that phone call comes, and you are announced as the Test captain.”
“Responsibilities change, communication changes, the way in which you carry yourself in the dressing room changes.”
“I struggled with it, I absolutely hated it, and I was rubbish. You have to change, and I couldn’t command the respect of the dressing room, you say something, and it is frowned upon, it is a completely different story.”
- First Test – July 8-12 @ Ageas Bowl
- Second Test – July 16-20 @ Emirates Old Trafford
- Third Test – July 24-28 @Emirates Old Trafford
England begins its summer of cricket, which has been severely affected by the coronavirus pandemic, on July 8, with the first of 3 Tests against the West Indies.
More matches against Pakistan, Australia, and Ireland are all penciled in; however, they are all likely to be played in front of empty stadiums.
And Pietersen says that will present Root’s side with a different challenge.
“I would rather be in the broadcaster chair than in the players’ chair because entertainers like atmosphere and you are going to have to build your own atmosphere and dig as deep as you can to try your best and perform in front of a whisper,” he added.
“It is going to be hard, especially for cricket.”
“Six hours, when you’re in the field and guys are batting, and you’re 100 overs into an innings, England are going to have to dig deep because it is going to feel like a warm-up game, with no one watching.”