England’s Kevin Pietersen’s professional cricket career will soon come to an end after the third edition of the Pakistan Super League. Pietersen will represent Quetta Gladiators in the PSL. The South African-born batsman posted a photo of himself on Instagram, hugging his son before leaving to join the Gladiators in Dubai.
Pietersen said, “Countless goodbyes to Jessica Taylor and my kids as a cricket player and this one this evening is the last one I’ll ever have to do. I’ve hated every goodbye but also known it’s work so just gotten on with it. The journey has been absolutely amazing and for the next three/four weeks I’ll be a current professional and then it’s chapter closed! Had my time and loved it but the endless goodbyes and travel need to calm down now. Cricket has been the best.”
The Englishman has been one of Quetta’s best players and led them to the finals of the first two PSL. However, he didn’t travel to Lahore last March for the title clash, owing to security concerns by his family. Quetta Gladiators owner Nadeem Omar also spoke about Pietersen’s unwillingness to travel to Pakistan for the two play-off matches and final in Lahore and Karachi next month.
He said, “We are still trying to convince him that if our team makes the playoffs and the final we would love to see him carry on for us.”
The batsman was sidelined by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) in 2012 and again in 2014 after differences with the team management. His retirement puts to an end a successful but controversial career. The 2014 incident saw the 37-year old get booted out of the England national team for good. It also permanently damaged his relationship with his teammates and the England Cricket Board.