Tough being me in the dressing room: Pietersen

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Published: Tuesday, August 7, 2012, 10:24 [IST]
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Pietersen hints at Test retirement

Leeds, Aug 7: England cricketer Kevin Pietersen on Monday suggested that the third and final Test against South Africa could be his last Test, and refused to rule out Test retirement.

Having scored a magnificent century to mark his 21st Test ton, Pietersen was unstoppable especially against an attack that is considered to be the best in the world.

The South Africa-born cricketer, who was awarded the man of the match for his 149 and three wickets in the second Test that was drawn at Headingley, said the third Test against South Africa might be his last.

"I can't rule out that my next Test may be my last," said Pietersen during an emotional press conference after the second Test at Headingley on Monday.

Having announced retirement from ODIs and T20 in the month of June, Pietersen desired to play the T20 World Cup as he wanted to defend the T20 title that his team won in Carribean in the previous edition.

England and Wales Cricket Board, did not entertain Pietersen's desire, as they did not want to allow him to return to ODI fold after announcing his retirement.

According to ECB policy, Pieteresen wasn't allowed to choose either ODIs or T20 as they demanded cricketers to play either limited overs internationals (ODIs and T20s) or Test cricket alone.

Citing reasons of hectic schedule, Pietersen decided to call it quits and now, after regaining form in Tests, he seems to be at his prime, as cricketing fraternity lauded the batsman and has started talking about his retirement decision as it wasn't planned well.

Frustrated over the politics in ECB, Pietersen said making himself available for the full season of IPL 5, and the hectic schedule raised a few issues which forced him to call it quits.

"Those are two of many points, but not the main two," Pietersen said.

"There are a lot of other issues. It's absolutely 100% not a money issue. You'll find out soon enough, not tonight. It will be a lot clearer after the next Test match."

Pietersen also added that it was tough being himself in the dressing room.

"Let's get that very clear. There are other points I am trying to sort out in the dressing room. Wanting to spend more time with my family is another point, that is three, but there are a lot of other issues that are more important that need sorting.

"I cannot give any assurances that the next Test will not be my last. I would like to carry on, but there are obstacles that need to be worked on. It would be a huge shame if the next is my last, I love playing Test cricket for England, but we will see.

Pietersen also said that it would be a huge shame if the third Test against South Africa would be his last Test.

"It will become a lot clearer after next Test match. For me, the saddest part of all this is that the spectators just love watching me play and I love playing for England, but the politics is what I have to deal with personally and it's tough being me in this dressing room, playing for England."

With Pietersen hinting at Test retirement, due to the issues with England and Wales Cricket Board, eventually cricket is the loser here, if Pietersen's Test career comes to an end while he is at his prime.


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