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Surrey agree Pietersen T20 terms

ESPNcricinfo staff
February 10, 2014 « Morgan opts for England above IPL | Chartbeat test »
Kevin Pietersen will still be seen on English cricket grounds this summer © Getty Images
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Surrey have agreed terms with Kevin Pietersen for the 2014 season and are hoping that the batsman England no longer want will bring them a Twenty20 bonanza instead.

Pietersen will play in the revamped NatWest T20 Blast which is scheduled mainly on Friday nights from May to July, ensuring that he will still be seen on English cricket grounds as he faces a T20-orientated future. There is absolutely no talk of him playing in the Championship.

Surrey already pull in some of the biggest T20 crowds in the country and Pietersen is bound to add to the attraction despite the troubles for the county which saw them relegated in the Championship last season.

Details of his arrangement are not clear. England are thought to have paid off his central contract until September - although typically no official details have been released - and even if Pietersen could have put his feet up, it is in his best interests to play as much T20 cricket as possible as long as IPL franchises remain interested. He will know the result of that interest later this week.

There was no sense of concern about Pietersen's commitment to the cause from Alec Stewart, Surrey's director of cricket, and a man regarded in his playing days as a bit of a stickler for behaviour.

"We are delighted to have agreed terms with Kevin, and to have a player of his ability at the Kia Oval," Stewart said. "Unsurprisingly there was a great deal of interest in Kevin from around the world, but he has made it very clear that he wants to play at Surrey.

"It is not only good news for the club but for the domestic game in this country. We are now looking forward to watching him in the middle, scoring a bucket load of runs for Surrey."

Pietersen, whose public utterances have been limited since his England freeze-out to a couple of gnomic comments on Twitter, sounded just as enthusiastic, inspiring the belief that now his England career is over he could be about to enter his most productive county cricket phase as he seeks to keep himself in the shop window for T20 around the world.

"I'm absolutely delighted to have agreed terms with Surrey and am thoroughly looking forward to playing my cricket for the club this summer. I've had some of my best moments in cricket at the Kia Oval and I'm really excited at the prospect of getting back out there playing in what will hopefully be a brilliant summer for us all at Surrey."

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