Chennai, March 7 (IANS) England’s star batsman Kevin Pietersen has been ruled out of the World Cup with a hernia condition and Eoin Morgan will replace him.
Pietersen’s hernia problem surfaced during the tournament, but England’s medical team thought the surgery could be postponed till after the World Cup.
Pietersen was, however, struggling in the match against South Africa which England won by six runs. A re-look by the medical team indicated that the surgery need to be done immediately to avoid further complications.
“I fly home tonight. Out of the WC (World Cup) and IPL (Indian Premier League). Sad to leave India. Love the people & the hospitality. Absolutely devastated!!” Pietersen posted on Twitter.
International Cricket Council granted England the replacement.
“The Event Technical Committee of the ICC Cricket World Cup has approved Eoin Morgan as a replacement player for the injured Kevin Pietersen in the England squad,” an ICC statement said.
Morgan, 24, is a middle-order batsman and has played in 38 ODIs for England, scoring 1,160 runs at an average of 40. He was included in the original World Cup squad but missed out after breaking a finger in the build-up to the tournament.
England team director Andy Flower said the team was losing an important player in Pietersen, who was promoted to open the batting, where he was doing a good job.
“He’s a world-class player,” Sky Sports News quoted Flower as saying.
“I thought he was forming an interesting opening partnership with Andrew Strauss. In three of the four games they’ve played together they have looked good up front and they put on significant partnerships that have kicked off good batting performances.”
“We’re moving on now and Eoin Morgan is an exciting cricketer. It’s good to have him back,” said Flower.
Flower said Pietersen had been struggling with the injury for some time but remains hopeful that he will return in time for a busy summer.
“He’s got a problem and I’ve seen the scan myself. It’s a problem that he has been dealing with for a number of weeks now so he has got to go and get that sorted out and hopefully he will be ready for the first Test against Sri Lanka in the English summer.”