Boxing Day Test: Kevin Pietersen comes out fighting ahead of fourth Ashes Test
Kevin Pietersen says he is batting "as well as ever" and is not ready to follow Graeme Swann into retirement.
Last Updated: 24/12/13 12:24pm
England's star batsman averaged 27.5 during the three heavy Test defeats which saw the Ashes return to Australia earlier this month.
All but one of his innings have ended with a leg-side catch, and the manner of his dismissals has brought criticism from the likes of former England opener Geoff Boycott, who has called for Pietersen to be dropped for the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne.
But Pietersen came out fighting as he faced the press with two days to go before Melbourne.
Asked about his own future in the wake of Swann's decision to quit, he said: "I don't understand why you guys talk about everybody in the same light.
"I'm 33 years of age, and I'm batting as well as I've ever batted. I'll retire when I can't get up to play for England. I'm good as gold at the minute.
"I've got myself in every single time I've batted on this tour. I felt like a clown in Adelaide when I hit a ball from Peter Siddle to midwicket - I just didn't feel good at the crease at all, and you have those days sometimes.
"Every other time I've batted on this trip I've felt really, really good. I've got myself in every time I've batted, and a couple of times fortune didn't favour the brave.
"It's great for you guys - I give you guys plenty of energy to give me a clout. Of course (getting out caught) annoys me, but you guys write that it doesn't annoy me.
"When you have good days you take all the plaudits, when you have bad days you take the criticism. I'm having a couple of bad days, I'm so cool with it (the criticism)."
Asked specifically about Boycott's comments he said: "I have the greatest admiration for Geoffrey Boycott for what he achieved for England, but the way he batted and the way I bat are totally different."
Watch the fourth Ashes Test live on Sky Sports 2 from 10.30pm on Christmas Day