KEVIN PIETERSEN has signed a contract to return to Surrey this summer.
The move gives the record-breaking batsman the opportunity to press for an England recall, after being sacked in February 2014 following the Ashes whitewash defeat in Australia.
Pietersen cleared the way for a return to The Oval by agreeing a release from the majority of his Indian Premier League contract with Sunrisers Hyderabad - which clashed with the start of the English domestic season - and he will be available for Surrey’s first LV= County Championship match against Glamorgan in Cardiff on April 19.
Encouraged by new England and Wales Cricket Board chairman Colin Graves’ indication that he may be back in the mix if he can impress again in county cricket, the 34-year-old Pietersen has two months to do that if he is to achieve his dream of a Test recall in time for this summer’s Ashes rematch.
Pietersen told Surrey’s website: “I’m absolutely thrilled to be back at Surrey.
“It’s a club very close to my heart - and (director of cricket) Alec Stewart, (coach) Graham Ford and everyone at the club has been exceptionally supportive.
“There is a fantastic group of lads here, and I hope we can deliver what the great Surrey fans want to see - lots of runs and comprehensive victories.”
Stewart added: “A Kevin Pietersen with ambitions to play for England and a real determination to score big runs for Surrey will be a huge asset to us.”