Kevin Pietersen has decided to head to India and will join the Sunrisers Hyderabad squad for their remaining IPL matches, after it was made clear the batsman would not be selected to the England team anytime soon. This will give a major boost for the David Warner-led men in orange, who currently occupy third place in the IPL standings, and are one of the strong contenders for the playoff stages.
After being told by ECB's new director of cricket Andrew Strauss that Pietersen has no future with England and would not be considered for the upcoming Ashes series, the "devastated" batsman has decided to move on and play some cricket in the IPL.
In spite of scoring an unbeaten triple ton for his county side Surrey on Monday, Strauss said that Pietersen will not feature for England over the summer because of "massive trust issues."
"No one is doubting Pietersen's ability. His record stacks up and he should be proud of that," Strauss told Sky Sports News.
"But over months and years the trust has eroded between him and the ECB and there is a massive trust issue between Kevin and me. I wish that wasn't the case. I'm not apportioning blame, it's just a fact.
"That is the reality and because of that, we've decided it is not in the best short-term interests of the side for him to be in it. I went to see him last night to let him know he's not part of our plans for the summer.
Pietersen, who is the highest run-scorer for England across all the formats, was sent into international exile post the Ashes thrashing by Australia in 2013/14. It looked like Pietersen's England career was over at that point, but later the new ECB chairman Colin Graves said that he can be recalled for the England side if he scores enough runs by playing county cricket, instead of the IPL.
Pietersen was bought by SRH during the auctions earlier this year but decided to leave for England to play for Surrey, with the hope that if he scores a lot of runs, he might get recalled for into the England squad. The Sunrisers Hyderabad team management supported his decision, and allowed the destructive batsman to play for Surrey instead of the IPL. But now, after the conformation from Strauss, Pietersen has decided to head back to India, reported AFP.
"I am absolutely devastated that it looks like my hopes of an England recall have been brought to a close, especially given everything that has been said and asked of me," Pietersen said in an interview to The Daily Telegraph.
"They have used the word 'trust' to justify not selecting me, well, trust is a two-way thing. I couldn't believe just half an hour after I had my meeting, the result of it was on the internet and on the BBC airwaves. Now I certainly didn't tell anybody, so who did? They say they don't trust me but how can anybody trust them?.
"It'll give me a good opportunity to cool down and assess what I'm going to do next. I'm just sorry I won't be putting on an England shirt."