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Pietersen’s troubles continue

The next significant date in the current dispute between Kevin Pietersen and the ECB is looming on Saturday with the deadline for England to name their World Twenty20 squad.

Confidential negotiations are still ongoing and Pietersen’s representatives have not given up on him being considered for the squad if the situation is resolved.

Pietersen was dropped for the third Test against South Africa after failing to provide assurances that the text messages he sent to South African players were not derogatory towards team-mates, including Andrew Strauss, as has been alleged.

The ECB delayed naming the squad for the third Test by five hours to allow Pietersen time to clarify what was in the text messages but no reply was forthcoming. Pietersen, who on Saturday evening released a YouTube video stating his commitment to all cricket for England, responded by saying he was “gutted” to be dropped and wanted to continue his international career.

As with the Test squad, the Twenty20 party was selected during a meeting at Edgbaston last week before Pietersen released his video announcing his commitment to all international cricket. Having previously retired from limited-overs cricket in June, Pietersen’s name was not in the provisional 30-man list, although that in itself does not preclude selection for the tournament.

However, given the tension surrounding both parties, led by Pietersen’s refusal to confirm the content of text messages, it would appear a long shot for there to be a chance of resolution before the squad deadline. And, having made such a play of team spirit and unity with the decision to drop Pietersen, the selectors and Andy Flower will not be about to make any swift about turns. (Cricinfo)

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