Sport

Petulant Pietersen's England career appears over

Tuesday, August 21, 2012 | 7:13 PM    

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LONDON, England (AP) — For all his brash brilliance with the bat, Kevin Pietersen's divisive influence within the England dressing room may have finally cost him any hope of playing for the national team again.

For the sake of team unity, English cricket may need to sacrifice the former captain who steered the national team to its first major international title in 2010.

When the team heads to Sri Lanka next month to defend that World Twenty20 title, Pietersen will not be in the 15-man squad.

"It's a very sad situation for everyone involved," England team director Andy Flower said today.

There appears to be no way back for Pietersen after he sent text messages to South Africa players that were apparently critical of his teammates during the test series that ended Monday with the Proteas replacing England as the number one test team in the world.

"He's absolute history," former England captain Tony Greig said. "There's no way he'll ever play again."

He was dropped for the final test following the revelation of the text messages to his rivals.

With his talent at the crease increasingly overshadowed by his petulance away from it, the England and Wales Cricket Board is in no rush to rebuild bridges.

Pietersen is reported to have used one of the harshest insults in the Afrikaans language to describe captain Andrew Strauss in the texts.

He now appears to be on the international scrap heap, eight years after making his debut for England in 2004.

Born and raised in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, Pietersen qualified to play for England through his mother, Penny.

He was an increasing source of tension in the England camp, holding onto the captaincy for just five months.

The resignation in January 2009 followed a power struggle with coach Peter Moores over selection decisions.

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