Home > News >

England optimistic about Kevin Pietersen’s return for Ashes: Andy Flower

Kevin Pietersen

A knee injury has kept Kevin Pietersen out of action since March © Getty Images

London: May 30, 2013

England team director Andy Flower said on Wednesday that he was “thinking optimistically” about star batsman Kevin Pietersen‘s chances of returning to fitness in time for the Ashes series against Australia.

A knee injury has kept Pietersen out of action since March, forcing him to miss the current series at home to New Zealand, the Indian Premier League, and next month’s Champions Trophy.

He hopes to be available for the Ashes series, which starts at Trent Bridge on July 10, and posted pictures of himself batting on Twitter earlier this week, much to Flower’s delight.

“We are thinking optimistically about Kevin’s injury improving and it’s nice that he’s pain free. That is great news for him and for us,” said Flower.

“Kevin’s a really special player and we want him back as soon as he’s fit enough to be back. That (seeing him bat) is good news for us and hopefully his improvement graph will carry on in the same way.”

Pietersen’s absence has allowed Yorkshire pair Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow to stake their claims for long-term involvement in the England set-up.

Both players impressed on their home ground in England’s 247-run win over New Zealand at Headingley this week, with Root claiming a maiden Test century and Bairstow finishing unbeaten on 64 and 26.

“Joe has played outstandingly well in all three forms of the game since he’s been given the chance to play international cricket and he’s handled it really well, which is testament to his character and his skill,” said Flower.

“It was also really nice to see how the Yorkshire public responded to his success; they really shared his excitement and his pride and his passion. That was evident to see when he did manage to get to 100.

“It was nice to see Jonny celebrate Joe’s success as he did and be genuinely pleased for him, and it was also nice to see Jonny do well in this Test match in both innings too.”

Pietersen’s return would necessitate a reshuffle of England’s batting order, but Flower was reluctant to discuss the suggestion that Root could be moved up the order at the expense of Nick Compton.

“None of us can foretell the future,” he said.

“It’s been a great series for Joe and it was nice that he got the man of the series too, but we don’t know what’s going to happen in the future, none of us do. We’ll see how things pan out.”

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (14:00 IST)   at Port Elizabeth

Sri Lanka tour of New Zealand, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (03:30 IST)   at Christchurch

India tour of Australia, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (05:00 IST)   at Melbourne

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Jan 2, 2015 (14:00 IST)   at Cape Town

Sri Lanka tour of New Zealand, 2014-15

Jan 3, 2015 (03:30 IST)   at Wellington

More

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Dec 19, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

New Zealand won by 68 runs

India tour of Australia, 2014-15

Dec 17, 2014  at Woolloongabba, Brisbane

Australia won by 4 wkts

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Dec 17, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

New Zealand won by 7 runs

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Dec 17, 2014  at Centurion

South Africa won by an innings and 220 runs

England tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Dec 16, 2014  at Colombo

Sri Lanka won by 87 runs

Photos

India vs Australia, 2nd Test at Brisbane

Videos

Ind vs Aus: Dhoni analyses the 4-wicket loss at Brisbane

Akshar Patel picked far too early for Test cricket

Live Cricket Score Ranji Trophy 2014-15, Round 3, Day 2 — All matches: Yuvraj Singh scores 2nd century in his 2nd Ranji game this season

Shahid Afridi, please do not take the innocence away from cricket

South Africa vs West Indies 2014-15: Is Jason Holder a captain or a stooge?

Can Eoin Morgan change England’s limited-overs fortunes?

Anil Kumble Australia India Interviews Moments in history Ricky Ponting

Alastair Cook participates in World Darts Championships following World Cup axe

South Africa not worried about Test rankings, says Dale Steyn and Hashim Amla

Younis Khan: Was not easy to make name under Saeed Anwar, Basit Ali, Rashid Latif and Moin Khan

ICC World Cup 2015: Punter ejection in Big Bash League puts organisers on high alert

India vs Australia 2014-15: DRS can be used in event of “howlers”, says Ravi Shastri

New Zealand vs Sri Lanka 2014-15: Can New Zealand benefit from Kane Williamson’s captaincy in Tests?

India vs Australia 2014-15, 2nd Test at Brisbane: Mitchell Johnson’s performance in 2nd Test has ominous signs for India

South Africa vs West Indies 2014: Chance for Rilee Rossouw to make his mark

Akshar Patel picked far too early for Test cricket

ICC World Cup 2015: Will India’s trend of performing against expectations continue?

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

683 Posts | 6 Fans

Mitchell Johnson's 37 wickets against England in Ashes 2013-14

प्रसिद्ध कथक नृत्यांगना सितारा देवी नहीं रही

More broadband connections to boost GDP growth in Asia Pacific: GSMA

India is becoming our largest overseas market, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun says

Bigg Boss 8: Ali Quli Mirza, Renee Dhyani, Upen Patel, Praneet Bhatt, Sonali Raut – who should be evicted this week?

Revealed: The reason why Kishore Kumar’s biopic starring Ranbir Kapoor won’t feature Katrina Kaif!

अभिनेत्री प्रियंका चोपड़ा ने स्वच्छ भारत अभियान में हिस्सा लिया

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here