Sport

Broad: Teammates to mend rift with Pietersen

Wednesday, October 17, 2012    

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LONDON, England (AFP) — England bowler Stuart Broad believes his international teammates are ready to end their rift with Kevin Pietersen after agreeing to peace talks with the controversial batsman.

Pietersen was sent into exile during the Test series against South Africa after sending provocative text messages to the opposition that contained criticism of then England captain Andrew Strauss.

The 32-year-old was dropped for the final Test and has since been left out of the one-day series against South Africa and then World Twenty20 tournament in Sri Lanka, while Strauss retired from all forms of cricket during the controversy.

But Pietersen has now apologised for his behaviour and recently signed a new central contract with England after agreeing to enter a "re-integration" process. The next step in bringing Pietersen in from the cold will be a meeting with his England teammates and coach Andy Flower.

Flower and several of England senior stars were believed to be furious with Pietersen's actions in recent months, but there has been a softening of that attitude and Broad is hopeful the talks will aid the Surrey batsman's return in time for the forthcoming tours to India and New Zealand.

"It's in the management's hands. Of course (we'd welcome him back). We've had some amazing success with KP as a team," Broad told the BBC yesterday.

"I've been in the side six years, we've won two Ashes series and a Twenty20 World Cup, and we know that KP is a really dangerous player for us.

"There's not a better man in charge than Andy Flower to put the situation right and there's a lot of trust in him at the moment.

"Whether it's for (the tour of) India or New Zealand, the team will welcome him back.

"We pride ourselves on being an honest changing room and the only way to move forward is to talk about things.

"There will be a meeting with some of the hierarchy and we just need to lay some things out.

"I think that will be a really good meeting with most of the England players, and hopefully we can move forward and draw a line under the whole experience."

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