‘Cook and staff would have quit if KP returned’

England

According to a newspaper article from the Mirror in England, England captain Alastair Cook was all set to walk out of the job if new ECB director Andrew Strauss had cleared a path for Kevin Pietersen's return.

The animosity between Cook and Pietersen came to a full peak during the Ashes in early 2014, and Cook was more than pleased with the ECB decision then to sack the star batsman.

The report says Cook, and a number of ECB background staff, was ready to walk out the door, telling Strauss and CEO Tom Harrison to pick between the two. The chose the skipper.

A source 'close to the ECB' told The Mirror: "There are people who would absolutely have walked away rather than deal with Kevin again.

"He has made life incredibly difficult for a large number of people over the years and the idea that he might be back horrified them."

For his part, Pietersen was furious with the decision to block any future return, saying he had been deceived by the ECB after they told him to score county runs. He gave up his IPL contract in order to play for Surrey, averaged over 200, and felt that deserved a look-in.

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