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Exclusive – Cork: ‘Hampshire are right to leave Pietersen out’

Hampshire captain Dominic Cork has told talkSPORT that the Royals are right to leave Kevin Pietersen out of their squad for Twenty20 finals day.

The former England all-rounder admits Pietersen is a terrific talent, but believes it would be unfair if one of his team-mates had to make way for the 30-year-old and miss out on the showpiece event.

“Kevin Pietersen in any side is a world beater – he’s a fantastic cricketer and no-one will ever doubt that he can win you a game on his own,” Cork told the Sports Breakfast.

“But I think it was right that the club made a decision that they thought that the guys who got us here, the young talent of James Vince, Danny Briggs, Chris Wood and Michael Bates, one of them would have had to miss out on one of the biggest days in cricket – Twenty20 finals day.

“I’m sure there will be people to say we’re wrong to do it and people that say we’re right to do it but you’ve just got to go on your gut feeling and the club feels that that’s the right way to go.”

Cork also said he is confident of being passed fit for Saturday, in what will be Hampshire’s first ever appearance at finals day.

“I’m struggling a bit with a back injury but I’m hoping that I will be OK,” added the 39-year-old.

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