London, May 20: England Test cricket team captain Alastair Cook on Wednesday denied issuing an ultimatum over the selection of batsman Kevin Pietersen.
Pietersen has been told he will not be considered for selection this summer, with reports suggesting Cook would have resigned had the batsman been recalled.
“There was no ultimatum on KP, I don’t know where that came from,” Cook was quoted as saying by bbc.
“The players weren’t consulted and I want it to be that way. I just have to go out there and try to win for England.”
Pietersen was given hope of an intertiol recall by new England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chairman Colin Graves, only for director of cricket Andrew Strauss to say the 34-year-old would not be selected because of “trust issues”. “That was a decision taken by Straussy and chief executive Tom Harrison,” added the 30-year-old Cook.
“We have got to start looking forward because the story has been put to bed by the ECB.
“They have decided the direction in which they want English cricket to go. I’m responsible for the team out on the field and I have to focus on that.”
Cook was part of the initial decision to end Pietersen’s intertiol career in February 2014, but repeatedly asserted he not been involved in the most recent disregarding of England’s highest run-scorer.
However, despite endorsing Pietersen’s non-selection, Cook would not explain why he was in favour of not having the South Africa-born player in his team.
“This has gone on for 15 months and we have to start looking forward. All the exterl stuff that has happened over the last 10 days isn’t important,” he said.
“What is important is how we play our cricket. That is all I can focus on. It’s irrelevant as to whether I can play with him because it’s not a decision that I have to make.” (IANS)