Kevin Pietersen is thought to have been told by the ECB’s new national director of cricket, Andrew Strauss, that he will not be selected for his country again.
The 34-year-old met with his former captain – who is scheduled to face the media this afternoon – yesterday after he hit a career-best 326 not out as Surrey built up a 236-run first-innings lead in their County Championship match against Leicestershire at the Kia Oval.
The news is a devastating blow for Pietersen who said he deserves a place in the England side having given up an IPL contact with the Hyderabad Sunrisers in order to pursue an international recall.
“Today was a real big day for my career,” said Pietersen after yesterday’s play.
“A lot of people put me under a lot of pressure this morning. With that pressure I think that was one of my best innings I’ve ever played.
“That’s purely because I knew that tomorrow there is a press conference and I knew that there were things happening this evening.
“I knew I had to basically answer any questions with runs on the board. And my goodness – 326 is a pretty good argument.”
Strauss will be heavily quizzed over the reasoning for his decision during today’s press conference and faces the possibility of a public and media backlash if Pietersen scores heavily in county cricket.
After the dismissals of ECB managing director Paul Downton and England head coach Peter Moores, it had appeared the opportunity for Pietersen’s dramatic return to international cricket was increasingly likely.
However, today’s news suggests that Thursday’s selection meeting between national selector James Whitaker and interim coach Paul Farbrace will not involve discussions on Pietersen’s future.
“All I’ve been asked to do by the chairman elect is to get a county and to get runs. I’ve got a county and I’ve got runs – what more can I do,” said Pietersen yesterday.
“I do believe I am good enough to play for England. I played well in the Big Bash, I gave up a contract in India and I’m not playing for any money here.
“I am dedicated to getting back my England place. I want my place and I think I deserve it.”