Kevin Pietersen seeking new IPL franchise

There are rumours that the batsman's England career is over

Kevin Pietersen is one of 10 English players who have nominated for next month's Indian Premier League auction.

Pietersen is seeking a new franchise, amid claims his England career is over, after the Delhi Daredevils opted not to retain any of their players from last season.

The 33-year-old has been listed at the highest base price of £194,000 and is one of just two players who played in the Ashes whitewash to nominate.

Ian Bell is, surprisingly, the other although he is not set to be required by England until the summer after being rested for the upcoming limited overs series in the Caribbean.

Eoin Morgan, Ravi Bopara, Jade Dernbach, Craig Kieswetter, Luke Wright and Dimitri Mascarenhas are also on the list alongside Nottinghamshire duo Alex Hales and Samit Patel, who must attract the most lucrative contracts on offer to play under a deal with their county.

Stuart Broad, Jimmy Anderson, Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes have not nominated.

It had been suggested Pietersen might opt not to put his name down for the auction, which takes place on February 12-13, as a sign of his desire to fight for his England place.

It remains to be seen whether he will wear an England shirt again, after team director Andy Flower plots his new era.

England's hierarchy have been unwilling to discuss the controversial right-handers' future - or any of their under performing Ashes players - until a review is conducted in the coming weeks.

Pietersen's listing in the IPL auction confirms his intention to again play in the IPL, where he is regarded as one of the most valuable players both on, and off, the field.

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) central contracts permit their players to play in the tournament and return on May 13.

That would allow them seven days to prepare in home conditions for the one-day international series against Sri Lanka.

The likes of Bell and Bopara would therefore need to return at that time should they be snapped up.

That would mean that they and Pietersen - should he remain an England player - would not be available for the entire tournament which is likely to reduce any offer they attract.

Patel and Hales, the world's top-ranked players, could be prevented from taking up a deal under a clause in their contracts with Nottinghamshire.

Both need to sell for the highest amount and therefore have nominated themselves at the maximum base price alongside Pietersen.

PA

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