Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

England Confident KP Will Be Fine for Pakistan Series

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

England Confident KP Will Be Fine for Pakistan Series

Article excerpt

Byline: Tom Collomosse

KEVIN PIETERSEN is expected to be fit for England's Test series against Pakistan later this summer despite being ruled out of the forthcoming one-day internationals against Bangladesh with a thigh injury.

Pietersen sustained the problem in Saturday's final NatWest Series match against Australia at Lord's. He was forced to bat with a runner and was dismissed for a four-ball duck as the Aussies rescued some pride with another victory to ensure the five-match sequence ended 3-2 to the home side.

The 30-year-old's absence -- England insist he would have be rested from the three matches against Bangladesh anyway -- means a recall for Jonathan Trott. The selectors have also decided to give off-spinner Graeme Swann a breather, enabling James Tredwell to return to the squad.

Pietersen's latest injury will come as a concern to England supporters, especially with the npower Series against Pakistan beginning on 29 July, and with an Ashes campaign looming, but national selector Geoff Miller is confident it is a minor problem.

"I think it's a slight injury as opposed to a major one," said Miller. "We are just being cautious and I think he will be okay soon. I can't categorically say it at this stage but I am sure he will be fine for the Test series against Pakistan. But we are obviously wary, because there is a lot of cricket coming up over the summer and the winter as well."

Pietersen (below) is likely to spend some of his time away from the middle discussing his county future after announcing his decision last month to leave Hampshire.

The batsman has chosen to quit the Rose Bowl because of the travelling involved from his Chelsea home and Middlesex are thought to be the front-runners to sign him.

Pietersen's international commitments mean he would rarely be able to play the county game but Middlesex director of cricket Angus Fraser is nonetheless keen to acquire him.

"Any club wants the best players and Kevin falls into that category," said Fraser. …

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