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Kevin Pietersen retains hope of limited-overs return for England

9th July 2012

• Kevin Pietersen says a change of schedule might help
• Batsman still wants to play in world Twenty20

Kevin Pietersen still harbours hope of playing limited-overs cricket for England again, despite retiring from the international one-day and Twenty20 formats.

The batsman admits a change to the punishing schedule could persuade him to return to one-day internationals. “I’ve had my wife, mother, dad, mother-in-law, brothers and my best mates all saying to me ‘don’t you wish you were out there batting against Australia [in the current one-day series)?” Pietersen told the Daily Mail. “And I’ve said to them I haven’t missed it at all. But maybe all I needed was a break. Who knows? I’ve played a lot of cricket in the last seven years.”

Asked if he would reconsider his retirement, he said: “Never say never. I’m a lot older and more mature than a few years ago, so you never know. Anything can happen. I’ll never say no, but the schedule would have to be a hell of a lot different for me to come back. Wait and see.”

Pietersen called time on his 50-over international career to protect himself from burnout because of the intensity of the schedule, but with the England and Wales Cricket Board demanding he make himself available for both shorter formats or retire from both, England’s most bankable asset opted for the latter.

He hopes the ECB might relent to allow him to play in the World Twenty20 in the autumn. He said: “I still hope there might be a compromise for the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka. The squad hasn’t been announced.

“Central contracts are renewed every September, so there’s scope. Fingers crossed. I would love to play in that and defend our title with England. If it happens, great, but I’m not holding my breath.”

Pietersen also defended his decision to keep playing in the Indian Premier League, insisting other countries’ governing bodies make allowances for the IPL and it is the atmospheres at the matches rather than the money which attracts him.

“Okay, the ECB may say me playing in the IPL makes it hard to rest me but what annoys me is that, with every other board the IPL is a matter of fact. It’s not going away,” he added.

“It’s going to be there and players want to play in it. Players want to go and earn their money and unless you let them decisions will have to be made.

“Big players want to play in front of big audiences. You want to hear your name chanted by 50,000 people. It’s amazing. It makes you feel so good. The window for that has been created by the other boards but unfortunately not ours.”


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