Kevin Pietersen: Andrew Strauss blames a 'massive trust issue' with former team-mate as reason why he won't be a part of Ashes series

Strauss confirms that while Pietersen is not barred from the side, he is not a part of their plans for this summer

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The Independent Online

Andrew Strauss has revealed that a "massive trust issue" with Kevin Pietersen is behind his decision not to include the batsman in England’s plans for this summer’s Ashes series.

Strauss informed Pietersen personally on Monday night that he is not part of his plans for the England cricket team after taking up the ECB’s role of director of cricket. Appearing in an interview with Sky Sports News, Strauss explained the reasons behind his decision, and why despite calls from England fans to reinstate the exiled batsman, he will not be a part of the national team this summer.

"The first thing to say is now's the time for some really honest and open conversation about Kevin Pietersen.

"No one has ever doubted Kevin Pietersen's ability as a player. He has been a phenomenal player for England over a long period of time.

 

"His record stacks up to anyone in England cricket, and he should be very proud of that.

"But over months and years, the trust between himself and the ECB has eroded.

"We are in a situation now where there is a massive trust issue between Kevin and me.

Andrew-Strauss1.jpg
Andrew Strauss is unveiled as the director of cricket for the ECB

"I wish that wasn't the case. I'm not apportioning blame - it's just a fact.

"That is the reality - and because of that, we've decided it is not in the best short-term interests of the side for him to be in it.

"I went to see him last night to let him know he's not part of our plans for the summer.

"I can't give him any guarantees about the future. But he's not banned from the side."

Strauss also told Sky News reporter Paul Kelso that he offered Pietersen an advisor role to the one-day team, to which "he didn't feel he was in a position to accept".

 

Just as Strauss was confirming the news, Pietersen took to the crease at the Kia Oval to continue on his overnight 326 not out for Surrey. By the time Strauss had finished speaking, he was already piling on the runs in the County Championship match against Leicestershire, and was soon left stranded on 355 not out as Surrey ran out of wicket, finishing their innings on 557 all out.

Pietersen was just two runs shy of the all-time record for Surrey.

Strauss also confirmed that Joe Root would replace Ian Bell as Test vice-captain following his backing for the current skipper in Alastair Cook, while Eoin Morgan would continue in his role as captain of the one-day and Twenty20 sides.

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