Pietersen signs peace with ECB, to return to England team

Colombo: Kevin Pietersen is set to return to the England team as the controversial batsman has reached an agreement with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) after being dropped during the South Africa tour.

Pietersen was embroiled in a controversy after he sent provocative text messages to the Proteas team players about then skipper Andrew Strauss.

Taking an exception to Pietersen`s conduct, the ECB had dropped the prolific batsman, who also missed the ongoing World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka.

"ECB and Kevin Pietersen confirm that agreement has been reached concerning a process for his re-integration into the England Team during the remainder of 2012. Upon completion of the programme, the England Selectors will consider Kevin for future matches," ECB said in a statement.

The statement added that Pietersen has apologised to Andrew Strauss and regrets the impact the recent controversies have had on the England team.

Pietersen, who appeared with ECB chairman Giles Clarke at a briefing here today, hoped he would play for England "as soon as possible".

"It`s been a horrible situation for all involved but it`s time to move forward," Pietersen was quoted as saying by those present at the briefing.

"All being well, I`ll be back in an England shirt as soon as possible. I am committed to completing the re-integration process we have agreed over the coming weeks and resuming my England career in all formats, hopefully until the World Cup in 2015 and as long as my body allows.

"I want my son growing up seeing me playing for England and I hope one day he will put an England shirt on himself.

"I`d like to take this opportunity to apologise to my team-mates, England supporters and the ECB for the situation that has arisen over the last couple of months. Thankfully we have drawn a line under it and can move forward."

ECB said Pietersen has assured them that the messages were not derogatory towards anyone and that he did not divulge any tactical information to the rivals.

"Kevin conceded that the messages exchanged were provocative. ECB is satisfied, following receipt of this binding assurance, that to the best of his recollection, Kevin did not convey any messages which were derogatory about the England Captain, the England Team Director, the ECB or employees of the ECB.

"Furthermore, there was no tactical information whatsoever provided to members of the South African Touring Party," the statement further said.

Clarke added: "Kevin has signed a central contract today. Andy Flower will determine the progress of the re-integration process. It could be soon, it could be much later."

It is, however, not yet clear if Pietersen would travel to India after being initially not considered for the upcoming tour.

England will play a four-Test series, two Twenty20 internationals during the tour, starting later this month.

They will also play a One-Day series in India in January.