Kevin Pietersen remains a cool and composed figure ahead of what will be a tough tour © Getty Images

Kevin Pietersen believes that high confidence and the readiness to be on a learning curve will be crucial if England are to overcome India in the upcoming series.

"You've got to adapt or else you die. You can't go and play like you play in England, South Africa or Australia," said Pietersen. "It takes time but I'm a very quick learner. It doesn't take me long to get going in different conditions so hopefully it won't take me long to get going here," he told reporters at the team hotel in Mumbai today.

Pietersen had a fine tour of India as part of the England A team that competed in the Duleep Trophy in 2003-04 and he said that experience was important. "In terms of preparation it actually gives me a lot of confidence that I can get a few runs in the subcontinent. I got four hundreds in four different games here, the last time I toured India. I had a pretty ok tour of Pakistan. I got a Test hundred and I played two one-dayers and I got a fifty. It's the confidence factor you need to take into the subcontinent and I have that."

Stressing the importance of possessing the right attitude while batting in India, Pietersen said, "It's about a lot more patience out here. It's a case of a different mindset as well. You've got to be very mentally focused and know your game inside out. To be successful in the subcontinent, because of the different wickets, the spinners, it's a case of working as hard as you can to groom your game."

He added that England would have their work cut out while facing India's bowling attack comprising three left-arm medium pacers, apart from Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh. "It's a different kettle of fish now facing the likes of Harbhajan, Kumble and [Irfan] Pathan. To be fair, the bowling attacks I faced when I got those hundreds [for England A] is nothing compared to what I'm going to face here. We've watched how the bowlers have been bowling. None of the net bowlers we've been given are left-armers and we don't have any. But we've practiced accordingly, changed angles and technical things to hopefully counter left-arm swing bowling.

"I've faced offspin and I've faced legspin but these are world class bowlers [Kumble and Harbhajan]. They bowled Australia out and they can bowl out any team in the world. Especially in India, it's going to be testing conditions. The whole England team has a challenge and we're looking forward to it."

A rib injury forced Pietersen to miss the last three one-dayers against Pakistan but he was happy with his recovery since then. "It's pretty good. Just feels a little bit uncomfortable now because I've started being active again these last couple of weeks. I was told to rest my body for four-six weeks. I went to South Africa to holiday with my family and I did absolutely nothing, so it's uncomfortable at the moment. I'm not concerned at all because there's no pain."

The time off in South Africa did him a world of good and he was geared up to get back to playing cricket. "It was fantastic, I loved it. I was relaxing with mum, dad, brothers, sisters-in-law and nieces. It gave me my first two months off in five or six years. I'm really looking forward to playing cricket again. It's going to be a very tough tour, Pakistan was very, very hard. India is going to be very, very tough. It always is on the subcontinent."

George Binoy is editorial assistant of Cricinfo