London: England captain Alastair Cook revealed on Thursday that Kevin Pietersen remains in talks with ECB officials as the controversial batsman fights to save his international career.Pietersen has been in exile since sending text messages to South Africa players that contained criticism of then England skipper Andrew Strauss during the recent Test series.
With reports circulating that Pietersen had also fallen out with several of his team-mates as a result of his behaviour, the South Africa-born star was axed for the final Test, the subsequent one-day series and the current World Twenty20 tournament in Sri Lanka.
England Managing Director Hugh Morris claimed there are still issues to be resolved with Pietersen before he can return to the fold and Cook confirmed there was still some distance between the two parties as talks continue.
Morris and ECB chief executive David Collier have been in Sri Lanka, where Pietersen is working as a television pundit for the World Twenty20, and it is believed they met the exiled star in a bid to continue the peace process."I did have a meeting with Kev and I have been involved in meetings. Clearly the issues haven't been resolved and that is why he is not available for selection at the moment," Cook said on Thursday.
"Time hopefully will be a healer and we will be able to move on, but the issues will still have to be resolved before Kevin plays for England again."At this present time the issues haven't been resolved and he can't be selected."Meetings are still going on in Sri Lanka at the moment. David Collier and Hugh Morris are out there as well.
"If the issues can be resolved, Kevin has said he is available for selection but at the moment that can't happen."Cook conceded England's hopes of winning the forthcoming four-Test series in India have been hit by Pietersen's absence."That is a given," Cook said. "Kevin has proved in all conditions around the world that he is a world class player. His record suggests that in all forms of the game."It is a sad circumstance. Clearly he is a world class player and he is not playing for England at this precise moment in time."He will be missed but it gives opportunities to other players and they can do well. There is no reason these guys can't fill the gap there."