KP: Biff convinced me to play for Dolphins

England

Former England batsman Kevin Pietersen says his deal to play for the Dolphins in the Ram Slam T20 later this year was brought about by many discussions with former Proteas skipper Graeme Smith.

Pietersen and Smith, good friends now despite their rocky relationship a decade ago, discussed the possibility of KP playing in the tournament, and while the 2014 plans fell through, KP was pleased to be able to sign on this year.

He will play for the Durban franchise, in the province he was born and raised in, for the first five matches of the tournament, before jetting off to Australia for the Big Bash League.

Pietersen said: "It came about through my really good friendship with Graeme Smith. Biff has been talking to me about it for a long time. The dates fitted for the first two weeks of November.

"He's become a really close friend. We've just been together in the bush at his house with a load of the other guys – (Mark) Boucher, (Jacques) Kallis and Damien Martyn.

"We almost nailed it (a Ram Slam deal) last year but something came up and I had to pull the pin. Biff and I were commentating at the World Cup and he just kept asking me to come play here.

"So when the schedules opened up, and there was an opportunity to play in Durban I was like 'yup, I'm all yours'."

Pietersen has become a T20 staple around the world, from the Big Bash to the IPL to the Caribbean Premier League, and now the Ram Slam. He has no qualms about being called a mercenary.

The batsman continued: "If you want to perform around the world you have to take emotion out of what you do.

"You've got to get out there and do the business. I think that's why I've been successful around the world, because emotion muddles the brain."

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