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The Ashes: England batsman Kevin Pietersen to return from injury

Kevin Pietersen: Back in action for Surrey on Friday

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England have received an injury boost ahead of the Ashes after it emerged Kevin Pietersen will play for Surrey in their County Championship game with Yorkshire on Friday.

Pietersen has been struggling with a knee injury that ruled him out of the Champions Trophy and had left him in doubt for the Tests against Australia.

But his fitness has improved and he will feature for his county side at Headingley Carnegie later in the week.

Pietersen confirmed the news on Twitter after a fan asked if he would feature for Surrey in their Division One match, which starts on Friday.

Surrey will not officially announce their team until Thursday but if Pietersen does return as expected it will be a big boost for his chances of playing in the Ashes.

He will then have a second opportunity - for England against Essex at Chelmsford - for match action before the five-Test series against Australia starts at Trent Bridge on July 10.

While Pietersen's expected return is great news for England, they will be slightly worried by a fresh injury to top spinner Graeme Swann.

Swann was forced to miss England's crucial ICC Champions Trophy clash with Sri Lanka in Cardiff on Sunday with a calf injury, while he skipped their opener with a sore back.

Although no indication was given as to how serious the latest problem is, with Swann also only recently returning from elbow surgery he could do with a run of games before taking part in the Ashes.

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