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Page last updated at 22:57 GMT, Thursday, 25 June 2009 23:57 UK

Injury progress lifts Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen
Pietersen is expected to play a vital role in the Ashes series

Kevin Pietersen says he expects to enter this summer's Ashes series fully fit after making encouraging progress in his battle with an Achilles injury.

The batting star's problem surfaced in the Caribbean this winter and forced him to miss matches against West Indies and in the World Twenty20.

Pietersen said: "I'm waking up every morning now absolutely fine and able to do my routines and drills pain-free.

"The improvements have been huge and, mentally, that's important."

Fears emerged earlier this month over his participation in the Ashes Test series against Australia, but the former England captain said: "My Achilles is okay.

"I have tried to make sure that I won't go into the Ashes series injured.

"I have seen too many players going into big series injured and come out the other end worse.

"I've made sure my rehab programme has been done really well. I have been as professional as I can be on this programme.

"I am doing everything I can pain-free. The only thing I haven't been able to do is road run and that is something we will talk about in the next few days."

"I am skipping for minutes now but three weeks ago, on the morning of the Netherlands game, I couldn't get down the stairs at my house."

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see also
Flintoff stars in Lancashire win
25 Jun 09 |  Counties
We missed Pietersen - Collingwood
05 Jun 09 |  Cricket
Superb Netherlands shock England
05 Jun 09 |  England
Pietersen out of one-day series
20 May 09 |  England

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