KP back for England in warm-up game

Kevin Pietersen will be making his comeback to the England squad following his brief exile.

England batsman Kevin Pietersen. Picture: AFP

MUMBAI - Kevin Pietersen's England exile following a controversial text-message row will end on Tuesday when he plays against India A in a three-day match.

The flamboyant middle-order batsman was dropped for the third and final test against South Africa at Lord's in August after he admitted sending provocative texts to the opposition.

"Kevin will play tomorrow and bat at number four," England coach Andy Flower told reporters in Mumbai on Monday.

Pietersen had been left out of the touring party but earlier this month he was added to the squad following meetings with Flower, captain Alastair Cook and other senior players and members of the management team.

His return will boost England, who lost their world number one test status to South Africa in August, in their quest to win a test series in India for the first time since 1985.

"I spoke to KP this morning and he is desperate to get going and we are desperate to have him back," said Cook who took over as captain when Andrew Strauss retired after the South Africa series.

"He is here to score runs and pass on the experience of Indian conditions to the younger players in the side."

England, who arrived in India on Monday after a three-day training camp in Dubai, play three warmup matches before the four-test series starts in Ahmedabad on November 15.

India A have not included a frontline spinner, denying England practice against the slow bowlers who are likely to have a big say in deciding the test series.

"We're not in charge of who they pick or what they pick," said opening batsman Cook.

"We're in charge of what we do and we'll have to get the best out of that game and we'll get the best out of these next two weeks so we're ready."

Suresh Raina, who skippers India A, will battle it out with fellow left-hander Yuvraj Singh for the number six spot in the test team's batting order.

Yuvraj has made a fairytale comeback to the Twenty20 side following cancer treatment and is now hoping to play his way back into the test reckoning as well.

"He is my role model. I would love to see him back in whites," Raina said.

"I want that (number six) spot too but I'd rather not dwell on who it will go to. It's up to the selectors who they want to pick."

"I was there in England last year and I feel the pain of losing that series 4-0," added Raina. "I want to give some of that pain back."