Exiled England batsman Kevin Pietersen says he is “flattered” after former Australia skipper Steve Waugh said the ECB should forget about the controversial star.
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Pietersen’s return to Surrey did not go as planned, making just 19 runs from 28 balls against Glamorgan.
Waugh yesterday said the South Africa-born batsman was “not a great player” at present and that his form was not good enough to earn him a Test recall.
“England have got to make a clean break and look forward to the future,” Waugh is quoted as saying by The Mirror.
“Sometimes you have to have short-term pain to get the long-term gain.
“I don’t think he’s a great player right now. Setting aside all the other things, I don’t think his form warranted a spot in the England side.
“He may have been a great player but I wouldn’t class him as one now.”
Pietersen was axed following England’s disastrous 5-0 Ashes whitewash in Australia during the 2013/14 summer.
Incoming ECB chairman Colin Graves left the door open for Pietersen to make a comeback if his form in County cricket warranted a call-up.
Waugh added that Pietersen’s off-field dramas should be taken into account and that it would not be a good idea if England were to select the 34-year-old for the upcoming Ashes series.
Pietersen responded to Waugh’s comments, tweeting: “I grew up idolising guys like Steve Waugh, so for him to be even commenting on my situation is quite flattering. He’s a legend! Love him!”
I grew up idolising guys like Steve Waugh, so for him to be even commenting on my situation is quite flattering. He's a legend! Love him!
— Kevin Pietersen (@KP24) April 20, 2015
Pietersen was granted an early release from his £250,000 IPL contract with Sunrisers Hyderabad to play County cricket for Surrey, but it remains to be seen if he is genuinely considered for selection even if he performs with the bat.
Pietersen’s record at Test level is hard to ignore having scored 8,181 runs at an average of 47.28.