Broad is looking forward to seeing Pietersen back in the England squad
England Twenty20 captain Stuart Broad has revealed that there is and never was any bad blood between him and batsman Kevin Pietersen, and added that he would be welcomed back into the national team when the management decide the time is right.
Pietersen is currently representing the Delhi Daredevils in the Champions League Twenty20 (CLT20) in South Africa after his stint as a TV pundit for ESPN Star Sports during the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Twenty20.
The South African-born batsman will also meet some of his senior England team-mates when he arrives back home as part of his “reintegration” process, which began as soon as he signed a four-month central contract.
Pietersen has not played for England since the second Test at Headingley against South Africa after he was accused of sending derogatory text messages about former Test captain Andrew Strauss to some of the South African players.
Pietersen allegedly also shared tactical information with the South Africans, whereby he told them how to get Strauss out, but upon close inspection by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), it was found that these allegations were actually false.
To make his summer even worse, Pietersen was also accused to having a row with a senior player after going on a foul-mouthed rant against debutant James Taylor during the Test series against South Africa.
But, after resolving all these issues and apologising in public, Pietersen will be on his best behaviour in the next few weeks if he is to have any chance of making the Test squad for the upcoming tour of India.
“I’d have no problems playing with him or having a beer with him. It’s not an issue, once the England management has decided when he’s available to return, he’ll be welcomed back into the changing room. We know he’s a great cricketer, he’s won a lot of trophies and has been a really good team-mate for England, certainly ever since I’ve been playing for them. We know that when KP’s focused on playing for England and he’s happy, he’s a really dangerous player,” Broad said.
Broad himself was also at the centre of attention during the Pietersen saga after he was accused of setting up a parody Twitter account about Pietersen.
But, Broad denied having anything to do with the account, despite knowing Richard Bailey, the man who confessed to creating the account.
“The team have no issues with KP coming back if the management decide he’s ready to, it’s in their hands at the moment. There are some meetings going on behind closed doors and we’re waiting to see the outcome of those. But from the team’s perspective his integration will be easy. Ultimately we’re playing cricket and we want guys who will score runs and take catches to help England win. Whatever’s happened has happened. We pride ourselves on being a strong dressing room and I’m sure that if he came back for India or New Zealand, or whenever it is, that things will be fine within the team,” Broad added.
Many cricket pundits believe England made a huge mistake not including Pietersen in the World Twenty20 squad, but Broad defended his decision and stated that England were eliminated in the super 8 stages since many of the players were participating in their first major ICC tournament.
“It’s hard to tell if the results would had been different had he been there, obviously he’s a fantastic Twenty20 cricketer who did wonders for us when we won the World Twenty20 in 2010. In June, when I found out he’d retired from the white-ball format, as captain I was hugely disappointed because I thought he’d be an integral part of our World Cup defence. It would be hard for me to say we didn’t miss someone of his experience at the top of the order so I was disappointed when he did pull out. But the situation went towards the management side of things and it turned out he couldn’t be there,” Broad said.