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Ashes 2013-14: England’s Kevin Pietersen ‘batting as well as ever’

Ashes 2013-14: England star Kevin Pietersen insists he is batting as well as ever ahead of the fourth Test, which starts Boxing Day

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Kevin Pietersen insists he is “batting as well as ever” ahead of the fourth Ashes Test in Sydney, which starts on Boxing Day.

The 33-year-old has been linked with a possible retirement after averaging a below-par 27.5 runs during their three Test losses Down Under this winter.

I’ll retire when I can’t get up to play for England. I’m good as gold at the minute

Kevin Pietersen

But Pietersen feels “good as gold” despite England’s recent struggles, and the batsman has no intention of following Graeme Swann’s lea and calling time on his career.

“I’m 33 years of age, and I’m batting as well as I’ve ever batted. I’ll retire when I can’t get up to play for England. I’m good as gold at the minute,” Pietersen said.

“I’ve got myself in every single time I’ve batted on this tour. I felt like a clown in Adelaide when I hit a ball from Peter Siddle to midwicket – I just didn’t feel good at the crease at all, and you have those days sometimes.

“Every other time I’ve batted on this trip I’ve felt really, really good. I’ve got myself in every time I’ve batted, and a couple of times fortune didn’t favour the brave.

“It’s great for you guys – I give you guys plenty of energy to give me a clout. Of course (getting out caught) annoys me, but you guys write that it doesn’t annoy me.

“When you have good days you take all the plaudits, when you have bad days you take the criticism. I’m having a couple of bad days, I’m so cool with it (the criticism).”

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