Kevin Pietersen Named As England Replacement Captain

Kevin Pietersen was today named England’s replacement One-Day International captain for the 5th NatWest Series ODI against New Zealand at Lord’s on Saturday in the absence of Paul Collingwood. Collingwood was today handed a four-match ban for a level three ICC code of conduct breach for his side’s slow over rate during yesterday’s 4th NatWest Series ODI at the Brit Oval. Collingwood will miss Saturday’s NatWest Series ODI against New Zealand, England’s ODI against Scotland on August 18 at Edinburgh, the NatWest Twenty20 International against South Africa on August 20 at Chester-le-Street and the 1st NatWest Series ODI against South Africa on August 22 at Headingley Carnegie Stadium. He received a four-match ban after England’s failure to bowl its overs in the required time during yesterday’s match which led to an automatic Level 2 charge - this was compounded to a Level 3 charge following the same offence within the preceding 12 months (England v India at Bristol on August 24, 2007). Pietersen will captain the England side in the final NatWest Series ODI in what will be his 76th ODI for England after making his debut against Zimbabwe in 2004. Kevin Pietersen said: “I’m humbled to have been handed the England One-Day captaincy in Paul Collingwood’s absence for the final NatWest Series game at Lord’s. Captaining England has been a dream of mine but I also understand that I’m assuming the role in Paul’s absence as he is the captain and leader of the One-Day side. To be asked to captain your country is the ultimate honour in sport and I feel privileged and proud to have been asked to lead the side on Saturday. “I’m very much looking forward to leading the team against New Zealand and am excited by the challenge of captaining such a young and talented side. We can’t win this NatWest Series but I, like the rest of the dressing room, expect an outstanding England performance to finish the series on a high.” Paul Collingwood said: “Obviously I’m disappointed to be missing England’s next four limited overs matches but as a team we are aware of the rules and regulations in place and it’s my responsibility to bear the penalties for such a breach. Clearly we'll look to address the problem so it doesn't happen again. "The England captaincy means the world to me and already I'm looking forward to leading the One-Day team against South Africa in August. I wish my teammates all the best for Saturday's final ODI as we aim to finish the series with a win." In Paul Collingwood's absence Andrew Strauss has been called up to the England squad as cover. © ECB