Kevin Pietersen said he still has the hunger for the game and his body is fit enough © Getty Images
By Julian Guyer
London: Jul 4, 2014
Kevin Pietersen insisted on Friday he still wanted to play for England again as he urged the selectors to be “braver” with their choices for the national side. Pietersen was controversially axed by England following the team’s 5-0 Ashes 2013-14 series loss in Australia even though he is England’s all-time leading international run-scorer.
South Africa-born Pietersen, a former England captain, hasn’t given up on an international recall although the present hierarchy, including Test skipper Alastair Cook, are adamantly opposed to his return to the team.
Asked whether Cook was still the right man to lead England following their recent 1-0 loss to Sri Lanka in a home Test series, a guarded Pietersen said: “That’s not for me to say.”
However, Pietersen — who will play for the Rest of the World (RoW) XI side against Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) in the Lord’s bicentenary match on Saturday — said he would love to return to the ‘home of cricket’ to take part in a full international once again.
“I never give up, I’m only 34, I’m still young so hopefully one day I can play here in front of full houses but I just want to enjoy Saturday,” Pietersen told Sky Sports News.
“I’ve got the hunger for it and the body’s good so I want to go out there and do well,” added Pietersen, who has a superb Test record at Lord’s with five hundreds in 15 matches and a total tally of 1,235 runs at an average of 56.13.
Having seen England lose to Sri Lanka, their first Test series since he was sent into international exile, Pietersen called for greater boldness all round.
“In order for the public to get hold of the team and to accept what’s going on [we need] braver selections,” he told Sky Sports News.
“The talent is there, there are some fantastic cricketers out there. England just need to be a little bit more brave, if you’re going to talk the talk you’d better walk the walk.”