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November 15, 2019
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Pietersen urges Morgan to visit Bangladesh

LONDON: Former England captain Kevin Pietersen has told current limited-overs skipper Eoin Morgan he will be putting his international future in jeopardy if he opts out of the upcoming tour of Bangladesh.

The future of the tour was in the balance after an attack on a Dhaka cafe in July saw 20 — mostly foreign — hostages killed, with the Islamic State group claiming responsibility.

However, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said last month that the tour, which includes three one-day international and two Test match fixtures in October and November, would go ahead as planned.

The confirmation followed a visit to Bangladesh by an ECB delegation led by their long-serving security chief Reg Dickason.

England coach Trevor Bayliss has confirmed he has no qualms about touring Bangladesh, although Moeen Ali is the only England player to so far state publicly, and without qualification, that he will go if selected.

However, reports in the British press have suggested Test skipper Alastair Cook, who no longer plays white-ball cricket for England, will travel to Bangladesh as well.

“Eoin Morgan has no choice but to go to Bangladesh,” Pietersen explained in his Daily Telegraph column published Tuesday.

“It is a case of one in, all in so if he does not go he will have a red cross next to his name as far as the bosses at the England and Wales Cricket Board are concerned,” added Pietersen, England’s captain when they continued with their 2008 tour of India following the Mumbai terror attacks.

Morgan, speaking last week, denied he was “reluctant” to tour, with the Irishman saying: “I think when so much information is thrown at you within two months of a terrorist attack you need to digest everything and be settled within yourself so you can go there and concentrate on cricket.”