Always a performer

Ramprakash wonders what the ECB will think

Last updated: 12th August 2012  

If it was me I personally would not have chosen to do it in the manner that he has. What will the ECB think of it?

Mark Ramprakash
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Former England batsman Mark Ramprakash is "astounded" by Kevin Pietersen's U-turn over his international future.

Pietersen's international future appeared to be in doubt after announcing his retirement from the limited-overs forms of the game in June and with speculation rife that next week's third Test against South Africa at Lords' would be his last.

However in an interview posted on the internet, Pietersen said he "wants to commit to all forms of cricket for England". His U-turn has opened the way for his selection for England's defence of the World Twenty20, which gets under way in Sri Lanka next month, as well as England's final Test against South Africa.

Ramprakash was stunned by Pietersen's change of heart and, while he believes the batsman's presence could be a boost for England on the field, he believes the England and Wales Cricket Board will be concerned at the manner of his announcement and his continued courting of publicity.

Stunned

"I was astonished, absolutely astonished," he told Sky Sports News. "I suppose as England supporters we should all be very happy that Kevin seems to have cleared his mind and made himself available.

"If it was me I personally would not have chosen to do it in the manner that he has. What will the ECB think of it? I am pretty sure they will not enjoy the whole publicity of this issue going on whilst there is a very important Test series going on between England and South Africa - the two top ranked sides.

"This saga has continued to run and run in the public spotlight and Kevin seems very keen to put his side of the story into the public domain. I don't know whether he is worried about his image or just wants to get his side of the story over."

Unrest

Reports of unrest within the England camp and suggestions that Pietersen had fallen out with some of his England teammates were at the centre of stories that he could be left out of the final Test with South Africa. And Ramprakash, who played 52 Tests for England, believes Pietersen should only be welcomed back if any discord is resolved.

He said: "We know that there have been some issues -some unrest I suppose - he mentioned in the interview that he has had a discussion with one of his teammates and cleared the air over a few differences.

"Andy Flower has said the integrity of the team is paramount and no individual is bigger than the team. And it could well have been that Kevin was going to be left out of the coming Test match because of that reason.

"If he has cleared the air with his teammates and if we can get him back playing and getting on well with everybody else and the togetherness is there we know what can bring to the team with the bat.

"He is a huge influence on the field. He played that magnificent innings in the last Test match against South Africa and we were really indebted to him for keeping England in the game.

"As long as that is not detrimental to his teammates and everything that brings to the England fold, as long as that is not in a negative way then England can handle it and manage it."

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