YOU’VE GATT TO STAY, KP! Pietersen’s retirement could give Taylor a go
Daily Sport Tip: MIKE GATTING does not want to see Kevin Pietersen retire from Test cricket but believes it could present a chance to another player.
Pietersen hinted next week’s final match against South Africa could be his last Test after making clear last night his dissatisfaction with many aspects of his employment by the England and Wales Cricket Board.
A sensational innings of 149 in the second Test at Headingley has given Pietersen good reasons to think he is a key cog in England’s batting.
Former captain Gatting is unsure of Pietersen’s motivations for voicing his concerns in the middle of a Test series but is of the opinion the 32-year-old is not irreplaceable.
“I’m not sure why he wants to quit Test cricket now. But that’s up to KP,” Gatting said.
“He’s the man that makes the decisions.
“He’s done really well for England, and he proved that again at Headingley by playing a magnificent innings.
“It’ll be sad to lose him. But it will give somebody else a chance to come into the England team and prove their worth.
“He batted for a little while with James Taylor, I’m sure he might like to play for England.
“So when somebody stands down, it gives somebody else another opportunity.”
Gatting, who won 79 caps with England, also believes this should not cloud the team’s focus.
“It’s about the team, not about an individual,” he added.
Pietersen had refused to confirm that the decisive Lord’s Test would be his last when asked on BBC Test Match Special but added: “I would like to carry on, but there are obstacles that need to be worked out.”
Pietersen added: “It’s absolutely 100% not about money.
“There are clear things that I’m discussing. But there are other issues that need to be sorted.”
KEY MAN: Kevin Pietersen would be missed by Mike Gatting