Pietersen could skip IPL to push England recall bid
LONDON: England batsman Kevin Pietersen could push his bid for an international recall by missing the Indian Premier League in favour of playing English county cricket.
The 34-year-old, who won 104 test and 136 one-day caps, has not played international cricket for 14 months after being sacked following England’s 5-0 Ashes whitewash in Australia.
Pietersen has signed for IPL side Hyderabad but incoming England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chairman Colin Graves suggested this month that he could be recalled to the England set-up if he “scores a lot of runs” for a county.
England’s dismal showing at the World Cup, where they were knocked out in the group stage with two wins from six games, has led to calls for Pietersen’s return.
Pietersen does not have long to make his mind up, however, as the IPL starts on April 8, with the County Championship getting underway on April 12.
“That’s what I’m looking at,” Pietersen told Fox Sports Australia when asked if he would play county cricket. “It just makes perfect sense to explore different things.
“There will be a change of scenery at board level with the ECB and I’ve always expressed my desire to play for England again if I get the opportunity.
“It seems encouraging but I’ve got a few steps that I’ve got to climb.”
Pietersen believes he could work under England coach Peter Moores again despite the pair falling out in 2009.
Moores, who was reappointed as England coach in April, was sacked following the “irretrievable breakdown” of their relationship and South African-born Pietersen quit as captain.
“I can’t captain because I don’t think my relationships are great, but I played under Andy Flower and probably had a pretty worse relationship with Flower than I did with Moores,” he said.
Pietersen, who is also scheduled to play for St Lucia Zouks in the Caribbean Premier League in June and July, said he would be open to playing both test and one-day cricket for England.
“When you don’t play any form of international cricket and you’ve had it for such a long time, anything, absolutely anything,” he said.
“You miss it so much when you’re not playing.
“I’ve been lucky to play the Big Bash, play the IPL or play the Caribbean League. But test cricket, one-day cricket, playing for your country is very special.” (Reuters)