Kevin Pietersen is set for a return to Surrey this summer © Getty Images
Kevin Pietersen has rejoined Surrey for this year’s NatWest T20 Blast, after withdrawing from the Caribbean Premier League.
Pietersen was expected to appear for St Lucia Stars (formerly Zouks) in this year’s CPL, which runs from August 1 to September 9. But, as revealed by ESPNcricinfo, Pietersen has chosen instead to make a return to English cricket, with this year’s Blast set to be played in a block from July 7, with Finals Day on September 2.
Kevin Pietersen’s excitement at returning to Surrey was rather dampened when ESPNcricinfo broke his news before him. Sorry KP! © Twitter
While Pietersen is not a huge fan of England’s domestic T20 competition – he felt that playing just once a week rendered it difficult to find form or rhythm – the competition’s return to something approaching a window in 2017 may have eased his concerns.
Pietersen opted out of any involvement in the 2016 season, following final confirmation that his England ambitions were over, but his relationship with Surrey has remained very good, and the club never made any secret of their desire to re-sign him as and when he became available.
“I’m absolutely over the moon to be joining Surrey again. I’ve missed playing here at home and it’s going to be a special feeling walking out at the Kia Oval again,” Pietersen said.
“We’ve got some seriously talented guys in our team and I’m very confident we can achieve something really special this season.
“I’ve had some great times at this club and ground over the years; it’s a special place with top people, and I’m looking forward to once again being part of it.”
Surrey director of cricket, Alec Stewart, said: “Re-signing KP is a massive boost to the club and the NatWest T20 Blast competition.
“To have a player of his undoubted calibre available to us will add strength and experience to our squad and I’m sure all our fans will enjoy seeing him back playing in England again.
“His work ethic and appetite for success are infectious and our squad have always enjoyed having him around the dressing room and performing out in the middle.”
Pietersen appeared in the 2014 and 2015 editions of the CPL but pulled out of last year’s competition in order to take some time off. He has spent recent months playing in South Africa’s T20 Challenge, the BBL in Australia and the Pakistan Super League. The draft for the 2017 CPL is due to take place in Barbados on Friday.
George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo.
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Source: ESPN Crickinfo