Ian Bell will mentor Joe Root & Jonny Bairstow

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Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow can count on encouraging words from Ian Bell as both find their feet in the international arena, with the veteran batsman ready to impart the wisdom he has earned over 86 Tests with England.

The young Yorkshire duo, who have played only 10 Test matches between them, are both in the squad for the series against New Zealand on Thursday, and one will be afforded the ominous task of replacing the injured Kevin Pietersen.

Root looks the most likely to slot into Pietersen's position at No.4 in his maiden Test outing on home soil, while Bairstow is set to be used as the extra batter further down the order.

Bell will be sandwiched between each of the rookies in England's batting line-up, and is ready to provide both with any assistance they need - just as Michael Vaughan and Marcus Trescothick did for him at the start of his career.

"I see a little bit of my own situation in what Joe and Jonny are going through now, in terms of playing for England at an early age and learning in Test cricket," Bell told reporters.

"When I came into the team both Michael Vaughan, the captain at the time, and Marcus Trescothick were very good. I came in at the back end of a summer when we won all seven Tests, so it was a really good time to be involved with England, when we were on a high.

"I learned some really good stuff from those guys and now I’m in the same position that they were in when I was making my debut. It’s a good place for me to be.

"We’re always encouraged to share information, but I definitely find that this side of the game comes quite easily to me. For example, I know Joe Root said he hadn’t played at Lord’s before, so it’s about talking to him as much as possible during the preparation and practice days.

"I’ll speak to him about what to expect, in terms of the conditions, the wicket, the slope, and maybe try to give him a bit of a heads-up before he goes out to bat.

"There is always a job to do before the Test match starts and it’s important to get to know the younger guys as the summer goes on."

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