Pietersen calls Stanford a sleazebag

Kevin Pietersen revealed that his contract as an Ambassador of the Allen Stanford sponsored Super Series has ended.

updated: February 23, 2009 08:20 IST
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Kevin Pietersen on Sunday revealed that his contract as an Ambassador of the Allen Stanford sponsored Super Series has ended and he is not worried that the cash-rich event will not be held anymore.

England and Wales Cricket Board had also snapped all the ties with the Stanford Group after the news of business tycoon's fraud came to light.

The former England skipper had signed a personal deal with Stanford, who is accused of USD nine billion fraud. "I was an ambassador for Stanford - a player face - but that contract has gone," Pietersen said, though without disclosing the amount of the contract.

"Stanford was a sleazebag. I was very uncomfortable with the whole Stanford thing. I was not captain at the time, it was the uncomfortable situation of everybody thinking England team had been sold. It's not a bad thing we are not going to have that tournament any more," he added Pietersen, though, felt 'sorry' for the West Indies players, who might not get their one million prize money for winning the winners-take-all T20 match.

"I feel sorry for anybody who has lost their money in things like this in the current recession. With the financial state of the world, people were talking about money instead of cricket," Pietersen was quoted as saying by the 'News of the World' tabloid.

"It is not a drop in the ocean. A million dollars is a lot of money. Sulieman Benn was trying to get his money wired back into his account this week.

"It is heartbreaking that some of them have lost that and might not have the chance to get it back," Pietersen said.

Pietersen also criticised ECB chairman Giles Clarke for buying Stanford's idea without proper judgement. "It was tacky. It was weird seeing him (Clarke) land at Lord's in his chopper," he said, referring to the incident where Clarke landed at Lord's along with Stanford in his helicopter last June with a box full of notes worth $20 million.

"The public perception was that the England cricket team had been sold to a bloke with a lot of money. It was a business decision the ECB made but it has obviously gone a bit pear-shaped now," he said.