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Pietersen in line for record IPL deal

Kevin Pietersen has been offered a record three-year deal in excess of USD 4 million to play in next year's Indian Premier League and ECB will not object to the explosive England batsman turning out for the lucrative Twenty20 tournament.

According to a report in the 'Daily Mail', Pietersen will be given the green light by the England and Wales Cricket Board to ink the most lucrative deal yet offered in IPL though it has not till now allowed its centrally contracted players to play in the BCCI-backed Twenty20 venture.

"The ECB is resigned to allowing Pietersen to accept the three-year contract which has been offered by one of IPL franchises, which want England's best batsman 'at any price' and are prepared to better the USD 1.5 million a year given to Dhoni," the newspaper said.

This comes as a blow to the ECB, who had hoped to prevent their players from being lured to India ahead of an important 2009 summer that includes the ICC World Twenty20 and, of course, the Ashes.

The newspaper claimed that the head coach Peter Moores would have the final say on which contracted players would be permitted to join the IPL, but in Pietersen's case, they were already resigned to making an exception.

That means the Hampshire batsman is likely to head to India virtually as soon as England return from their tour of the West Indies at the start of next April and play in the IPL for three weeks to a month before returning to prepare for the World Twenty20 tournament in England and the Ashes.

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