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Ashes 2021-22 – Kevin Pietersen says four-month Ashes tour without families is “utter madness”

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Former England batter says he would back player withdrawals from “insane” schedule

Kevin Pietersen has branded the prospect of England’s cricketers not seeing their family for four months during this winter’s Ashes as “absolutely insane”, and said he would support anyone who pulled out of the tour.

Those players involved in both the T20I and Test squads are facing the prospect of several months away from home at the end of the year, with an Ashes tour following the T20 World Cup. Combined with Australia’s tough Covid-19 protocols, which render it almost impossible for casual visitors to travel to the country, it has raised the prospect of players either withdrawing from the series or England continuing the rest-and-rotation policy which has been utilised in recent months.

Responding to a Daily Mail article which outlined the issue, Pietersen wrote on Instagram: “Any England cricketer that pulls out of this winter’s Ashes trip will have my full support. To not see your family for four months is absolutely insane. Complete and utter madness!

“An Ashes tour is hard enough and to do it without your family for all or part of it, is just stupid.

“After the last 12 months or so, the players deserve their families whenever they want. And to those who say, ‘they get paid loads, so suck it up’, just be quiet. An Ashes tour is a tough tour. Players need all their comforts and be happy.

“I would 100% pull out if I couldn’t see my family for four months!”

Darren Gough, the former England fast bowler who has also worked as a consultant coach with the current team, replied with the comment: “Me 2 buddy”.
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