Sir Ian Botham praises Kevin Pietersen's "big innings"

Botham praises Pietersen's
© AFP
Sir Ian Botham hails the innings of Kevin Pietersen, who made 113 runs on day three at Old Trafford.

Former England all-rounder Sir Ian Botham has hailed Kevin Pietersen for his "big innings" that has kept the third Ashes Test alive.

Pietersen struck a defiant 113 at Old Trafford to become England's leading run scorer, which led to Botham stating that a draw is still possible in the match.

"Pietersen played magnificently," Botham told Sky Sports News. "He was controlled and aggressive when required. He went two-and-a-quarter hours without a boundary after a flurry of sixes; he set his stall out to play a big innings.

"Pietersen was always going to take [Nathan Lyon] on and when he did he suddenly gave Michael Clarke a problem. Does he keep the spinner going? If he doesn't, then there's more work for the seamers.

"It was a tough one but Michael Clarke will be frustrated; that said Australia are still in a very good position."

England will start day four 233 runs behind.

England's Kevin Pietersen raise his bat moments after reaching 50 runs during the third day of the third Ashes Test on August 3, 2013
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