KP: I’m still available for Ashes selection

Australia

Former England batsman Kevin Pietersen says he has not retired from the Test side, and feels there is still a place for him in the Ashes squad as he is in good enough form to compete with the current line-up.

Pietersen said that he was still available for selection, even during the Caribbean Premier League coming up, and that the 'fragile' England line up still left room for him, despite being told by the ECB that he was not on the radar.

Pietersen wrote in the Telegraph: "As we've all seen over the last month, there is some very exciting talent in this England team. That said, I believe batting slots could become available against Australia this summer.

"I want to be clear, I am not retiring from England. I still believe I can bat in that team and win games of cricket for England. And we have seen recently how fragile that batting order can be."

Pietersen addressed his stint with Surrey, where he recently scored a career-best 355 not out, on the same day he was told he was not part of England's plans. He wrote that while he was playing T20 cricket right now, he had the ability to play Tests as well.

He continued: "I have really enjoyed county cricket and being part of this Surrey team. I have loved batting and building innings. It has been a fun challenge.

"I wanted to score as many runs as possible to prove to myself and others that red ball cricket is not an issue for me.

"Everyone knows I was fairly disillusioned with things for a week or so after being told I would not play for England again, but I went back to Surrey and we have had a great time whether in the field or batting under pressure. I love that club and the blokes in it.

"I would still love to play for England given an opportunity but I also have to honour other contracts. I am duty-bound to honour my contract with the St Lucia Zouks but I will be available for England selection throughout that tournament and beyond.

"Some people will say how can England pick me when I am only playing T20? Well, I have just played four first-class games. I am averaging 156.33. I have proved I can still bat against the red ball.

"It is not an issue. I have switched from Test to T20 playing for England all over the world. It is second nature to me.

"I just know I have to carry on batting. I love it and while that is the case I will keep going. At the end of the day I do not control the other nonsense. All I control is what I do with my bat."

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