Cook was dropped on December 19 – just two months before February’s World Cup – after a dismal 2014 with the bat in which he hit just one 50 in 20 ODI innings and averaged 27.52.
???I actually think it is really good for his cricket that he???s been given a bit of a break this winter,” Pietersen said while commentating on the Big Bash League in Australia. “I of course feel sorry for the guy. He???s been put under a hell of a lot of pressure.
???But he can go back and have a real look at his game now and come back stronger in the summer.???
Cook’s struggles haven???t been limited to one-day cricket, with his last Test century coming against New Zealand over 18 months ago.
Pietersen feels a spell away from the game could have him back firing in Tests, as he continues as captain in the longer format.
???He???s scored 25 Test hundreds for England,??? Pietersen said. ???No mug goes out there and does that. He???ll be England???s greatest run-scorer ??? I???ve said it for a long time ??? and I want him to be, he???s a good guy. And he???s key for England in Tests in starting the innings off well.???
Commentating on the Adelaide Strikers??? eight-wicket win over the Hobart Hurricanes on New Year???s Eve, Pietersen also reflected on his own year.
The 34-year-old was part of the England team whitewashed 5-0 by Australia in the Ashes and was then axed from the England set-up, after which he released a controversial autobiography.
???It has been a brutal 2014 for me,??? Pietersen said. ???So I just want to look ahead positively to next year, focus on my cricket and see what it can bring.???