My exit helped England retain Ashes

England's Kevin Pietersen believes the rebellion that led to him losing the captaincy two years ago had been correct by the Ashes victory in Australia. England retained the famous urn with an innings and 157-run victory in Melbourne on Wednesday to go into next week's final test in Sydney with an unassailable 2-1 lead in the series. Pietersen said the captain-and-coach partnership of Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower that replaced Pietersen and Peter Moores in early 2009 had played a key role in producing that victory.

"You know what? I have never said this before I lost the captaincy, I got rid of the captaincy for the good of English cricket, and we would not be here today if I had not done what I did then," Pietersen told British reporters after the Melbourne triumph."There is no way in this world that we would have succeeded under that regime and would have won the Ashes again in Australia after 24 years."Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower need all the plaudits for an unbelievable 18 months and an unbelievable preparation for this team, and they are the right leadership for this team."

Pietersen paid tribute to Strauss's unselfishness, which he said made him an ideal captain.He looks after himself after he has looked after everyone else which is a great quality of a great captain," he added. Pietersen slammed Moores in a report to the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) after a tour of India in late 2008 and the ECB reacted by dismissal both captain and coach in early 2009, offering the skipper's job to Strauss. "When he gave me the phone call and said: 'The ECB want me to captain; are you OK with that?'," Pietersen recalled."I said 'Go for it, Straussy, you're a top man. I said I'm a good mate of yours, go for it, do whatever you need to,' and I've been proved right. It was a good decision by the ECB."


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