England pushed out after KP is axed

  • By: Andy Schooler
  • Last Updated: February 5 2014, 9:41 GMT

England have been pushed out to 12/1 for next month's World Twenty20 after dumping Kevin Pietersen into international retirement.

Kevin Pietersen: England career over
Kevin Pietersen: England career over

Pietersen was told at a meeting with new ECB managing director Paul Downton that is was the unanimous decision of the England management to "start the rebuilding process after England's disappointing winter in Australia".

England suffered an Ashes series whitewash and won only one game - a dead-rubber one-day international - on their recently-concluded tour.

Both Sky Bet and Ladbrokes reacted by lengthening England's World Twenty20 odds from 8/1 to 10/1 and spreadex go 12/1, a move which helps show how influential the South Africa-born batsman has been for England in the past.

The tournament, which England won in 2010, gets under way on March 16.

England were also pushed out for the 50-over 2015 World Cup - Sky Bet going 7/1 from 11/2 and Ladbrokes being prepared to dangle a standout 8/1.

Sky Bet went up with 1/10 about Pietersen never playing for his country again, while William Hill offered 33/1 about him donning the England shirt in a Test at least once more before slashing that price to 14/1 come Wednesday morning.

"We have a five figure liability on KP returning to play Test Cricket for England. The public have spoken and obviously want him back," said William Hill spokesman Rupert Adams.

Hill's also produced a market about Pietersen appearing in a reality TV show in 2014, going up with 16/1 about that happening.

Tom Warburton, of Sky Bet, said: "Pietersen has had so many off-the-field troubles in the past, that we make him good favourite never to play for England again. The lure of domestic contracts are good refuge for an ageing star with a galactic ego."

Speaking about the ECB's decision, Pietersen said: "Although I am obviously very sad the incredible journey has come to an end, I'm also hugely proud of what we, as a team, have achieved over the past nine years.

"I believe I have a great deal still to give as a cricketer. I will continue to play but deeply regret that it won't be for England."

Explaining the situation, Downton said: "We have decided the time is right to look to the future and start to rebuild not only the team but also team ethic and philosophy.

"England cricket owes a debt of gratitude to Kevin who has proved to be one of the most talented and exciting players to ever represent the country and his 13,797 runs are a testimony to his immense skill.

"This decision brings some clarity now for the future of the England teams and we all wish Kevin the very best in the rest of his career."

  • Updated at 0920 GMT on 05/02/2014.