Tuesday, February 21, 2017

IPL auction is a slap for Test cricket: Kevin Pietersen

London: Kevin Pietersen has described Tymal Mills’ £1.4million Indian Premier League deal as a slap in the face for Test cricket.

Former England batsman Pietersen voiced his concern on Twitter that a T20 specialist has become one of the current national team’s best-paid players, and called on the International Cricket Council to arrest the decline of Test matches.

Fast bowler Mills and Ben Stokes, a match-winner in all formats for his country, scooped by far the biggest pay packets when they were signed by Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rising Pune Supergiants respectively in Monday’s 2017 IPL auction.

Pietersen, who last played for his adopted country three years ago before being controversially sacked in the aftermath of England’s 2013-14 Ashes whitewash defeat, has been limited to T20 cricket himself since his last first-class match in June 2015.

Pietersen wrote: “Another SLAP in Test cricket’s face yesterday! A T20 specialist becomes one of the current England team’s richest players!” At 24, Mills is able to play only the shortest format because of a congenital back problem, which has forced him to retire from both first-class and 50-over cricket.

Pietersen added: “I don’t blame him at all! I know how T20 is growing the game! I’m just saying that Tests are falling way behind! ICC needs to act quickly!”

On the subject of T20, he added: “I embraced it eight years ago and it’s what caused me my P45! I love how all these youngsters are now benefiting!”

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