ICC World Twenty20 2012 August 20, 2012

Pietersen set to miss World Twenty20 squad


Less than 24 hours after seeing their No. 1 Test ranking slip away England will name their squads for the World Twenty20 and the one-day series against South Africa. Kevin Pietersen, the focus of so much attention over the last few weeks, is not expected to be among the names chosen.

There remains a huge amount of work to do between Pietersen and the ECB to create a path for his return to international cricket after his omission from the final Test against South Africa. There remains uncertainty over when the two sides will meet and while Pietersen's relationship with Andrew Strauss has the been the focus of the attention, the teams in the next few weeks will be led by England's other captains, Alastair Cook and Stuart Broad.

When the selectors sat down to pick the World Twenty20 squad two weeks ago Pietersen was officially retired from limited-overs international cricket, only to announce, via YouTube, that he was now available for all formats the day before he was dropped from the Test side.

England had started the process of moving on from Pietersen with Ian Bell slotting in at the top of the 50-over side and Alex Hales making 99 against West Indies at Trent Bridge in the T20I. The Twenty20 side would clearly be stronger with Pietersen included - his Man-of-the-Tournament display in the Caribbean was stunning - but the selectors would have been loath to ditch Hales.

England's batting, though, faces a mighty challenge in Sri Lanka in conditions that will test their techniques against spin, which remains the weaker suit. The rest of the batting order will have to be at the peak of their powers to compensate for the loss of Pietersen. Eoin Morgan becomes a key figure, a player with a similar X-factor quality to Pietersen who can turn a game in an instant.

The other issue the selectors have to decide on is Ravi Bopara, who has just returned to action following his personal problems, having earlier in the season cemented his one-day place with a strong series against Australia. He has a month to get back into cricket before the tournament - there may be consideration to leaving him out of the one-day series against South Africa - but England do not want to be left with any last-minute dramas to solve if his issues reoccur. The ECB is likely to have checked with the ICC if they would be allowed a replacement.

Jonny Bairstow and Jos Buttler are likely to make up the middle-order batting options while there could be a vacancy for a player able to fill a variety of roles if injury or illness occurred. As a batsman Bell fills the remit, but someone like Luke Wright would give full all-round options and the experience of having been part of the 2010 success. In that regard, do not discount Michael Lumb from discussions after his move to Nottinghamshire sparked his career, which had slumped following his brief England spell.

The bowling attack poses fewer issues with most names nailed on although James Anderson faces a nervous wait having not been regular in Twenty20 cricket. Chris Woakes, the Warwickshire allrounder, has pushed his claims recently while Surrey's Stuart Meaker could be an outside chance. Back-up, or support, for Graeme Swann will be required even though Samit Patel will be the second spinner. In a tournament environment experience is important so that could earn James Tredwell the nod ahead of Danny Briggs.

Possible World Twenty20 squad Alex Hales, Craig Kieswetter, Ravi Bopara, Eoin Morgan, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler, Samit Patel, Luke Wright, Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Steven Finn, James Tredwell, Jade Dernbach

Possible ODI squad Alastair Cook, Ian Bell, Jonathan Trott, Eoin Morgan, Jonny Bairstow, Craig Kieswetter, Samit Patel, Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, Steven Finn, James Anderson, Jade Dernbach

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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  • Dummy4 on August 22, 2012, 1:51 GMT

    I too agree that KP would find it hard to play under Stuart Broad. But I might ask "Does SB deserve to be captaining the T20. ". He seems to be untouchable after being a very naughty boy. Without KP England will struggle . Who will increase the run rate . That was what made KP so brilliant playing T20. There is no one else who can do it.

  • Tapash on August 21, 2012, 10:06 GMT

    I strongly believe, bad time for English started. They are out from Test Ranking # 1 and now in t20 world cup they will seriously suffer. KP is a great player, we respect him. He is better cricketer compare to any player in English team. We pray for him.

  • G on August 21, 2012, 8:34 GMT

    Its Just Like Australia threw out Andrew Symonds a few years back. ======== He was thrown out because of his off field conduct and total lack of professionalism. The ECB have got what they wanted - and England are a much more mediocre side as a result

  • Pratyush on August 21, 2012, 8:29 GMT

    Yes, team is greater than individuals. But all problem seems to stem from the fact that KP is born in SA and has to keep constantly prove he is actually English, while others who are not half as good as him get to lecture him about team ethics. Chuck Poms, Join the Springboks !

  • Pan on August 21, 2012, 8:27 GMT

    It's really not in anybody's interest for KP not to be playing this series, except maybe England's opposition. Neutrals, sponsors, England & KP himself would all be better off if he got picked. Saying that, it seems totally untenable at the moment, so fair play to England for taking a brave decision (not that his replacements have done badly in any of the 3 formats so far).

    @oldpunk: hahaha, yep, he'd still be the best spinner in India in 4 years time, would be a good career move for him! Mind you, if Hampshire is too far away from his house in West London....

  • Graem on August 21, 2012, 8:24 GMT

    If Matt Prior is not in the squad that would be a travesty. He got injured at the start of the 1st T20 WC in south Africa, he was left out of the squad at the last minute for the 2nd in England and left out at the last minute for the 3rd in the West Indies. He has been the most explosive T20 batter in this season's domestic T20 and his confidence in an england shirt right now is sky high.

  • Jason on August 21, 2012, 8:21 GMT

    @200ondebut, actually I think you'll find that KP is his own worst enemy, and it didnt stop KP playing under broad for the last year or so in T20's. The other factor is that Jimmy A will probably not play in the T20WC and Swann is mst likely doubtful as he needs to have an operation on his right elbow and England will want that to happen before the India tour in Nov/Dec.

  • Dummy4 on August 21, 2012, 8:13 GMT

    leaving out kp would be brave,but would be unfortunate too.team spirit is important to the game,but it's only a game at the end of the day and that's the important thing to realise.kp's fraternizing with the enemy and his supposedly derogatory remarks against his captain,might be mistakes when considered from an insular viewpoint of sports professionalism and ethics,but who he befriends,texts or what's the content of those messages shouldn't be a business of the ecb or andy flower or anyone else,could be strauss's business but I see little coming from his side.you can't have every joe or harry like you or do as you wish,and occasionally you do meet people who are on your team but are intractable.as a coach,as a captain,it's your job to see how you get the best of their unruliness.failure of management is quite obvious here.

  • Jay on August 21, 2012, 7:48 GMT

    @SriVathsa Cm: hahahaha... couldn't stop laughing from all that sarcasm !! :xD I mean really... KP is such a brilliant player. He will be missed come the World T20 in September. But got to say the other day was a shocker as KP got a duck against former county Hampshire... felt bad for the guy.

  • Robert on August 21, 2012, 7:41 GMT

    Of course KP is going to be excluded. There is no way he could play under Broad - whose flat mate derided him with information that could only have come from within the dressing room - and who condone and revelled in this derision by following the feed.

    Broad is one the of key reasons for the disharmony - along with is playmates Swan and Anderson.

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