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Pietersen may never play in England again – Jones

ASH, ENGLAND: Kevin Pietersen may have played his last professional game of cricket in England, former international team mate Geraint Jones said on Thursday.

South African-born batsman Pietersen, sacked by England at the start of the year, caused a storm of controversy this month when he attacked the national cricket board and several former team mates in a book.

The 34-year-old, who represented Surrey this year in limited-overs cricket, now seems set to ply his trade in domestic Twenty20 competitions around the world and ex-England wicketkeeper Jones said that would be a real shame.

“An English county may pick him up for Twenty20 cricket next year but if they don’t I think he’s gone,” Jones told Reuters in an interview while attending the Volvo World Match Play Golf Championship in Kent on Thursday.

“Kevin’s not featuring in four-day cricket these days so he could turn into one of those touring world T20 players. I think there’s a very good chance we won’t see him out in the middle again in England.”

Pietersen believes he still has a chance of returning to the international stage but Jones, who played alongside the swashbuckling batsman when England won the Ashes in 2005 for the first time in 18 years, said his actions were at odds with his words.

“If you look at his performances in the last 12 months and the fact that he doesn’t play in the four-day format any more, he simply can’t play international cricket,” said the 38-year-old who was released by Kent at the end of last season.

“You have to show some commitment and desire for a county side to warrant selection by England to back up all the chat.

“If Kevin’s serious he will go and play for a county next year and commit to everything, four-day cricket and all, but I can’t see that happening.”

Jones, who made his England debut in 2004 and went on to play in 34 tests, said Pietersen brought something new to the dressing-room when he joined the international set-up later the same year. (Reuters)

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