Kevin Pietersen has allayed any fears over his troublesome knee ahead of this winters Ashes series by claiming he is ‘pain free’ for the first time since February.
The powerful batsman played through the pain barrier in the recent Ashes series after missing the first half of the English summer due to his chronic knee troubles.
The 33-year-old hit 388 runs in his 10 innings, hitting one hundred and reaching 50 on three occasions to help England to a 3-0 series victory over the Australians ahead of the return series which gets under way on November 21st in Brisbane.
Pietersen was then rested for the two international T20’s before returning for the One Day International’s against Australia where he opened the batting alongside Michael Carberry who will join the Ashes squad to fly down under next month.
England’s leading run scorer in all formats of the game has told Talksport his hard work has paid off.
"For the first time since February I am totally pain-free and I am continuing to do the right things.
"It was tough but I've done some incredible rehab in the last three weeks and it feels like I have a different knee, I'm feeling so good on it," said Pietersen.
Since the Tests have finished he has been away on holiday and a short business trip to South Africa while continuing to focus on preparations for the gruelling schedule which starts in less than four weeks.
Three warm-up games are followed by five Tests (with another tour game after the opening Test), five ODI’s and three T20’s so planning for the tour has already started but if things were different Pietersen could have missed the entire winter and the summer just gone.
He had the option of a major operation last February which would have ruled him out for 12-months but instead the South African born match winner decided to go for extensive rehab, a decision he is proud of.
"It was probably the best decision I made for my career not to have surgery because if I had done I would be out till next February. I've felt like a different person. You know what it's like with injuries, you go to bed at night and wake up in the morning there is that little bit of negativity.
"You can't really focus solely on your job so to have come through it gives me a lot more positivity in everything I do. When you get to 33 you are definitely in your second cycle of your career and it is a case of ticking all the right boxes to keep you on the field."