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‘I am not English, said Pietersen’

cricket Updated: Jul 18, 2011 00:27 IST
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England do not need distractions before the crucial Test series against India, but a cricketer’s diary published in the Daily Mail may just provide some.

Australian Ed Cowan claims that Pietersen, irritated by a jibe during an England vs Australia ‘A’ game, refused to acknowledge England as his own country. The England batsman, born in Pietermaritzburg in South Africa, is one of four players from South Africa — alongside captain Andrew Strauss, Jonathan Trott and Matt Prior —included in the England squad for the first Test against India.

Cowan wrote that Pietersen “was heard to exclaim, as he cast his eye over the lunch buffet: 'What the **** is this?’”

Cowan told him that, being English, he should recognise bread-and-butter pudding. To this, Cowan writes, Pietersen replied, “I’m not ****ing English, Eddie. I just work here!”

Pietersen sports a tattoo of the Three Lions, the symbol of English cricket, on his arm.

Pietersen’s agent, Adam Wheatley, said that Cowan’s claim “doesn’t really warrant a response” while skipper Strauss laughed off the story, saying: “If he did say that, I’m sure he said it in jest.”