|Player:||KP Pietersen, A Flintoff|
|Event:||Australia in British Isles 2009|
DateLine: 26th July 2009
England star batsman Kevin Pietersen described missing the final three Ashes Tests as "mental torture".
The right-hander would miss the last three Ashes Test after undergoing surgery on his right Achilles this week.
"I'll be damn glad to see the back of 2009!" he wrote in his News of the World column.
"On Friday I was in so much agony I had to call the England medical team and ask them to come and give me something to combat it.
"Yet whatever the physical pain, it's nothing compared to the mental torture of the past week. To be out of an Ashes series is terrible, so bad I can hardly put it into words."
Pietersen, who revealed he had an epidural injection in his spine in order to get through the first Test in Cardiff, also rubbished claims and allegations that the injury aggravated during jogging on the beach while on Indian Premier League duty.
"I played the next day in Durban and there was no problem at all. I certainly wasn't under any instruction not to jog," he said.
While KP misses out, all-rounder Andrew Flintoff looks set to battle on through his final three Test matches before quitting the long form of the game following a succession of injury problems in recent years.
The right-armer said that all the pains go away when 25,000 fans drive your energy and one is living on the diet on adrenalisne and excitement.
"When you are charging in to bowl with 25,000 fans driving you on and you're living on adrenaline and excitement, it's easy to forget injuries," he said.
"But when everyone has gone home and you wake up the next morning, that's when you have to deal with it."
Australia on the other hand have taken encouragement from Pietersen's absence, with skipper Ricky Ponting claiming it will "hurt England badly".
"We still have three whole Tests to play. And that is plenty of time for us to turn this series on its head, especially as the loss of Kevin Pietersen is going to hurt England badly," Ponting wrote in the Sunday Telegraph,
"We all know what an influence Kevin is around their team. I said at the start of the series that he would be their go-to man, and the guy who would relish playing against Australia the most.
"He brings the X-factor to their batting. And a middle order without him in it definitely will not be the same," he wrote.