That brings Surrey's total number of players on the Ashes tour to three, level with Middlesex. Excellent news.
Seriously though, what exactly does this mean for the club? Well firstly its a good bit of business, he won't cost much, if anything thanks to his central contract, and he might attract a few more casual supporters to the Twenty20s. I suspect the marketing people at the club are already designing the T20 advertising with his face all over it.
The reality is though, he won't play that much at all. He has his IPL duties to fulfil, and as much as we need a number three, I don't think he'll forgo $1.5m or whatever it is to help us out there, and since he signed that contract before he signed for Surrey, there's no reason he should anyway. There's the World Cup before that which he'll play a big part in and then England play Sri Lanka in May and June, and India and July, August and into September. At best he'll play a Twenty20 here and a CB40 there.
In the long term it is in the ECB's best interests to ensure that England players are more readily available for the Twenty20 Cup matches, but the schedule is set in stone for 2011 so Pietersen in a Surrey shirt will be a rare beast indeed.
I'm happy he's joined the club though. He's a world beater and any time he can spend at the club, with younger players aspiring to play for England, like Roy and Hamilton-Brown will be immensely valuable. I don't buy the theory that his ego makes him a bad role model, his work ethic and sheer talent make him the best possible role model in my view. If this crop of young players can develop the thirst for runs that KP has, we'll have some serious talent on our hands.
Ultimately this changes little for KP and Surrey. His commute is cut significantly, which is nice, but not a great deal else will alter. As much as I'd like to play it terribly cool and pretend it makes no difference, it was a thrill to watch him bat in a Surrey shirt and it will be every time England let him off the leash in 2011 and beyond. Welcome to Surrey Kevin.
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