ENGLAND MISS KP

The England Cricket team will go into the third test match against New Zealand without their star middle order batsman Kevin Pietersen who will be out of action for two months because of a knee injury that he had discovered while taking part in the practice session before the warm up match against New Zealand XI.

Pietersen will also not be able to play for Delhi Daredevils in the sixth edition of Indian Premier League.

Talking to the reporters about Pietersen’s injury, one of the ECB officials said, “Kevin Pietersen will not play in the third test and in the upcoming IPL because his right knee has got injured.”

“He will return to UK shortly where he will visit a specialist for further treatment. He is likely to be out for 6-8 weeks. We are not sure if he will get fit for the home test series against New Zealand, but, we are expecting to see him back for the Champions Trophy.”

On the place of Pietersen, Jonny Bairstow is expected to be included in the playing XI of England for the third test match against New Zealand which is going to start from tomorrow at Auckland.

The last time Bairstow had played in whites for England was against India in November last year. In that match, he had batted at no. 5 and had managed to score only 9 runs in the first innings. In the second innings, he hadn’t got a chance to bat.

Bairstow is expected to bat at no. 6 in the Auckland test match. In the absence of Pietersen, Ian Bell and Joe Root will move up in the batting order and they will bat at no. 4 and no. 5 respectively.

Both the test matches in the series have ended in the form of draws so far. So, the third test match will be a series decider.

MORGAN IS DANGER MAN

The captain of Sri Lankan cricket team, Mahela Jayawardena, has said that his side should be careful of the two dangerous batsmen of England i.e. Eoin Morgan and Luke Wright. Sri Lanka will take on England in is third super 8 match at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium on Monday. It is going to be a very important match for the teams.

Sri Lanka has won its first two super 8 games. Mahela Jayawardena’s team defeated New Zealand in super over and then, thrashed West Indies by 9 wickets. The net run rate of the Sri Lankan team has become quite good after that big win against West Indies and the hosts are almost through to the semi finals, but, there is still a mathematical chance of them being knocked out of the tournament. That’s why, the Sri Lankan team doesn’t want to take its last super 8 match lightly at all.

In the press conference ahead of the match, Mahela said, “England is certainly a very good bowling unit. They have got tall, fast bowlers who can extract quite a lot of bounce from this Pallekele pitch. They have also got a world class spinner in the form of Graeme Swann.”

When asked about the batting line up of England, Mahela said, “Eoin Morgan is their best batsman and he is certainly one of the best T20 players in the world at the moment. He is a versatile cricketer. He can play improvised shots and he can also hit big, powerful shots down the ground. He also uses his feet very well against the spinners. So, our bowlers need to bowl well to him, otherwise, he can do some serious damage.”

“Luke Wright is also a clean striker of the cricket ball. He has been in amazing form in this tournament. We should be extremely careful of these two dangerous English batsmen.”

Morgan Considers IPL

England middle order batsman Eoin Morgan believes that playing in the cash rich Indian Premier League has made him a better player and he is thankful for the franchises that have given him the opportunity to play in the IPL as well. Morgan, along with most other English players, did not play in the first two editions of the IPL and only made the auction ahead of the third season during which, he was picked up by the Royal Challengers Bangalore before swapping sides to don the purple of the Kolkata Knight Riders from the fourth edition.

According to the left handed Irishman who traded playing for the country of his birth to represent The Three Lions, his experience in the sub continental wicket has been immense and it was all due to his stint with the IPL sides and whenever he comes back from the tournament, he comes back a better and more complete player.

Although he has failed to nail down a regular place in the starting lineup for either of his two IPL teams, Eoin Morgan still believes that it is an important experience for him. He did not play a single match in the ongoing season of the IPL for the Kolkata Knight Riders and when the team qualified for the playoffs, he was released by the team and decided to come back to Middlesex in order to reclaim his place in the England national team.

Morgan stated that it was his decision to go to the IPL straight from Dubai after not being selected for the squad that was going to Sri Lanka. He also added that if he had been selected, he might have made other decisions and would have returned to Middlesex earlier. But for the moment, Eoin Morgan will focus on county cricket to get back his international place.