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Last Updated: Saturday, 30 December 2006, 20:43 GMT
Pietersen shrugs off loner claims
Star England batsman Kevin Pietersen
Pietersen has top scored for England with 420 runs so far
Kevin Pietersen has dismissed Australia coach John Buchanan's claims that he is a loner and not a team player.

"It does hurt when people say that because I'm a massive team player," insisted England batsman Petersen, who has scored 420 runs so far this Ashes.

"He's probably just trying to target me and have a go at me.

"Australia love to have a go at individuals before series, during series and after series and I'm not really too interested."

Going into the final Test, in Sydney, England are 4-0 down and Pietersen admitted the team's poor performance was getting him down.

"I don't like losing, I love winning and I'll do anything to win for England and for the nation," he said.

Buchanan's not very well respected from what I can gather in the Australian ranks
England batsman Kevin Pietersen

"One thing that has really got to me was all the expectation of the fans when we left England and now we've got to go back feeling a bit embarrassed because we haven't done as well as people said we would."

And he insisted that Buchanan's words would motivate him for the final encounter as England try to avoid a 5-0 whitewash.

"He obviously thinks the series is still alive and they want to win 5-0 so they're trying to get into my head and make me feel like a lone ranger, which I'm not," said Pietersen.

"He's not very well respected from what I can gather in the Australian ranks so I'm not going to worry too much about what he says.

"He's going after the World Cup as well so that might be a good thing for Australia and for everybody."

Pietersen insisted he was committed to the England squad and revealed he has been helping Monty Panesar with his batting and has also passed on tips to the rest of the squad for facing Shane Warne.

"If people want to criticise me they can criticise me. As long as I know I prepare myself and get myself mentally tuned in to do well for this England team," he said.

"I support and help out if people in the team need someone to talk to and need some advice then I'm the first one to give advice.

"I'm helping Monty out at the moment and I'm helping some of the guys to play Shane Warne."

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