Updates from Sunday, Feb. 9
The ECB recognises the significant contribution Kevin has made to England teams over the last decade. He has played some of the finest innings ever produced by an England batsman.
However, the England team needs to rebuild after the whitewash in Australia. To do that we must invest in our captain Alastair Cook and we must support him in creating a culture in which we can be confident he will have the full support of all players, with everyone pulling in the same direction and able to trust each other. It is for those reasons that we have decided to move on without Kevin Pietersen.
Following the announcement of that decision, allegations have been made, some from people outside cricket, which as well as attacking the rationale of the ECB’s decision-making, have questioned, without justification, the integrity of the England Team Director and some of England’s players.
Clearly what happens in the dressing room or team meetings should remain in that environment and not be distributed to people not connected with the team. This is a core principle of any sports team, and any such action would constitute a breach of trust and team ethics.
Whilst respecting that principle, it is important to stress that Andy Flower, Alastair Cook and Matt Prior, who have all been singled out for uninformed and unwarranted criticism, retain the total confidence and respect of all the other members of the Ashes party.
These are men who care deeply about the fortunes of the England team and its image, and it is ironic that they were the people who led the reintegration of Kevin Pietersen into the England squad in 2012.
England batsman Kevin Pietersen will not be selected for the upcoming ICC World Twenty20, which signals the end of his international cricket career.
Pietersen was dropped for the World Cup T20 tournament that will take place in April in Bangladesh.
He later bid farewell via Instagram:
After a series of meetings that was thought to involve captain Alastair Cook, one-day coach Ashley Giles and new managing director Paul Downton, per Andy Wilson of The Guardian, the decision was made to drop Pietersen.
The England and Wales Cricket Board claim their decision was based on a need to rebuild not only the team but also "team ethic and philosophy," which will be seen as a parting-shot against him. The Associated Press' Rob Harris added the following:
Confirmation from ECB: Pietersen dropped "to start the rebuilding process after England's disappointing winter in Australia"— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) February 4, 2014
In a statement on Tuesday, Feb. 4, on the ECB website, the board said:
Kevin Pietersen has been informed by the England and Wales Cricket Board that he has not been included in the England squads for the forthcoming tour of the Caribbean later this month nor the ICC World Twenty20 to be held in Bangladesh in March.
Kevin Pietersen met with Paul Downton, the Managing Director England Cricket, this week and was told that the unanimous decision of the England management, including the selectors, was that now was the time to start the rebuilding process after England's disappointing winter in Australia.
The 33-year-old batsman, England's leading run-scorer in all formats, was informed this week by the England and Wales Cricket Board, writes the BBC. A career that spanned 104 Tests and more than 150 limited-overs appearances over nine years, per ESPN Cricinfo's David Hopps, Pietersen has had an illustrious career.
Downtown added that the decision to axe Pietersen was a tough one:
Clearly this was a tough decision because Kevin has been such an outstanding player for England as the fact that he is the country's leading run scorer in international cricket demonstrates.
However, everyone was aware that there was a need to begin the long term planning after the Australia tour. Therefore we have decided the time is right to look to the future and start to rebuild not only the team but also team ethic and philosophy.
Pietersen, clearly disappointed by the decision, said playing cricket for England has been an honour, and he thanked everybody for their support:
Although I am obviously very sad the incredible journey has come to an end, I'm also hugely proud of what we, as a team, have achieved over the past nine years.
I feel extremely fortunate to have played at a time of great success for England cricket alongside some of the best cricketers the country has ever produced.
Pietersen's somewhat controversial career has come to an end because of what many believe are off-pitch issues. However, Shane Warne reacted to the news:
I also just heard the sad news re KP that he has played his last game for England, to me it's a disgrace & a joke ! The ECB is in a shambles— Shane Warne (@warne888) February 5, 2014
The text episode of 2012—when Pietersen was discovered to have sent insulting messages to the touring South African side about then-captain Andrew Strauss—left a level of distrust in the England dressing room. The Guardian report also notes that Pietersen is believed to have fallen out with former team director Andy Flower prior to Flower's departure, and Hopps states Pietersen was also the key figure in Peter Moores losing the same position in 2008.
Pietersen made his Test debut in 2005, scored 8,181 Test runs, which include 23 centuries and 35 half-centuries. He also scored a further 4,400 at ODI level and 1,176 for the Twenty20 side, ESPN Cricinfo stats show.
Pietersen will now have more time to concentrate on the Indian Premier League, after he put his name down for the auction after the Delhi Daredevils decided not to retain any of their players from last season, reports the Press Association (via The Guardian).
The talented batsman will attract a host of teams and may be tempted to join his former side Royal Challengers Bangalore. Pietersen has been listed at the highest base price of £194,000.