Leeds, England:Kevin Pietersen has been ruled out of the whole of England's one-day series against the West Indies with an Achilles injury, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Wednesday.
England play the first of three one-dayers against the West Indies here at Headingley on Thursday.
However, the ECB insisted that by resting and undergoing treatment now, the South Africa born batsman would be fit for next month's World Twenty20 in England and the Ashes Test series against Australia, which starts in Cardiff on July 8.
An ECB statement said: "Kevin Pietersen has been withdrawn from England's NatWest Series squad due to a minor right Achilles tendon injury.
"Pietersen will undertake a period of rest and treatment during the NatWest Series ahead of England's ICC World Twenty20 campaign."
Nick Peirce, the ECB's chief medical officer, explained that the injury had occurred during the second Test match at the Riverside, which England won by an innings and 83 runs on Monday to take the two-match series 2-0.
"The Achilles injury flared up following the second npower Test match in Durham and the best course of treatment is for Kevin to rest throughout the NatWest Series," Peirce said.
"The injury would not necessarily prevent him from playing but by giving him a precautionary period of time out to receive some concentrated treatment and rest we are enabling the niggle to settle down in preparation for the ICC World Twenty20 and the Ashes.
"This is not an injury that would preclude him from participating in either event," Peirce stressed.
Pietersen added: "I'm extremely disappointed to be missing the NatWest Series as I was looking forward to playing a significant part in what should be an exciting and closely-fought one-day series.
"The medical advice is to rest the Achilles and although I'm frustrated to be leaving a happy and successful dressing room I'm absolutely confident this will help me overcome what has up until now been a minor ongoing injury," the former England captain added.
"I hate missing out on playing for England but understand that in this instance it's necessary in order to overcome the injury," Pietersen said.
"I'm looking forward to being back in the England line up for the World Twenty20 and the rest of an exciting summer of cricket."
However, England were equally confident that Andrew Flintoff, currently out with a knee injury, would be fit in time for the World Twenty20 only for the all-rounder to cast doubt on his own participation last week when he said: "I'd love to play in the Twenty20 - but that might be too tight."
England have not called up a replacement into their one-day squad, opening up the possibility that either former Ireland international Eoin Morgan could make his England one-day international debut on Thursday or that Warwickshire's Ian Bell might be recalled.