Pietersen reveals England u-turn
Kevin Pietersen has sensationally opened the door for an England comeback in limited-overs international cricket, admitting he would "love to play for another three or four years in all forms of cricket."
It is understood that Pietersen's representative privately met ECB officials to discuss a return on Thursday night. Pietersen is also thought to have met Hugh Morris, the managing director of England cricket, earlier in the week.
Asked whether negotiations into his England return in all three forms of the game were ongoing, Pietersen replied: "I think so."
Pietersen did not disguise his discontent with the way he has been managed by England, matters that would surely have to be resolved if he was to make a smooth return into the England side.
He complained that he had "never been looked after" by the England management and insisted that his schedule would have to be eased before he consented to a return.
Pietersen, speaking moments after he finished the third day of Surrey's Championship match at Guildford unbeaten on 234, reiterated his desire to be included in England's World Twenty20 squad in Sri Lanka in September.
The selectors meet this weekend to pick a 30-man preliminary squad for the tournament and must submit it to the ICC on July 18. England enter the tournament as defending champions.
Pietersen retired from limited-overs international cricket at the end of May. While he wanted only to retire from the 50-over game and to continue to play T20 cricket, the terms of England central contracts state that for a player to be considered for either format of limited-overs cricket, they must be available for both.
"I've always said I want to play in the T20," Pietersen said. "But I needed to get away from the schedule. I cannot keep playing every single day's cricket. I've never been looked after. I cannot keep playing every warm-up game, I cannot keep practising every single day. There comes a time when I know what I need to do to be successful. I've got a young family and I cannot be on the treadmill all day every day.
"I've said before that, if the schedule was right, if they could sort my schedule out, I would love to play for another three or four years in all forms of cricket. But the schedule at the moment is a nightmare."
Morris was an influential figure when Pietersen lost his job as England captain more than three years ago after a breakdown in his relationship with England's coach at the time, Peter Moores, broke down. Moores was also sacked.
England's unease will be all the greater because Andy Flower, England's director of cricket, has referred to similar tensions in balancing his professional and personal life because of the proliferation of international cricket.
George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo