Steve Waugh captained Australia to victory in the 1999 World Cup, aside from winning the Ashes in 2001 and 2002-03 © Getty Images
Steve Waugh captained Australia to victory in the 1999 World Cup, aside from winning the Ashes in 2001 and 2002-03 © Getty Images

Kevin Pietersen is no longer the batsman that he once used to be and that he does not merit a place in the current England side, if the latest comments by former Australian captain Steve Waugh are to be believed.

“I don’t think he’s a great player right now. Setting aside all the other things, I don’t think his form warranted a spot in the England side.

“He may have been a great player but I wouldn’t class him as one now,” Waugh was quoted as saying according to a report by the Daily Mirror. READ: Michael Clarke backs Kevin Pietersen to play in Ashes 2015

The ICC World Cup 1999-winning captain added that England as a team should move on from Pietersen and look at the path that lay ahead of them. READ: Kevin Pietersen should not expect an England recall, says Alec Stewart

” Sometimes you have to have short-term pain to get the long-term gain,” added Waugh.

The South African-born batsman, who made his international debut for England in 2004, has 8,181 Test runs to his credit along with with 4,440 runs in One-Day Internationals (ODI), that would easily place him in the list of the greatest English batsmen. Though he did not deny his greatness, Waugh felt that he would not fit in the current side. READ: Kevin Pietersen not on England’s mind, says coach Peter Moores

“First, he has to be one of the best six batsmen in the country, which he’s not. Then is he right for the current set-up? Does he fit in how the team is moving forward?

“Can he work with the captain and other players? Obviously there have been some issues. That’s part of the reason why he’s not there now.

“Unless he’s changed as a person and a personality – and that’s hard to do – I don’t know how you go back to what happened before,” said Waugh at the Laureus Awards. READ: Pietersen’s return talk would vanish if ENG beat WI, says Gooch

Waugh also criticised Pietersen for his antics both on and off the field. Pietersen, who was sacked from the English side following the embarrassing  Ashes whitewash in 2013-14, has been at constant loggerheads with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and publicly criticised Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Graeme Swann as well as former coach Andy Flower. More from Kevin Pietersen’s autobiography

” KP’s got a bit of history of undermining the captains, hasn’t he. It’s all chaotic. It’s a bit of a circus. It must be confusing for English fans, media and sponsors.

” Someone’s got to make a statement on what is actually going on because Kevin obviously likes the attention and he’s going to lap it up and milk it for all it’s worth,” added Waugh. READ: Kevin Pietersen is the best player I’ve ever played with, says Andrew Strauss

Kevin Pietersen however, stated that he was flattered by Waugh’s comments due to the fact that he grew up idolising the veteran of 168 Tests and 325 ODIs. The hard-hitting batsman took to his official Twitter account to express his feelings.