KEVIN Pietersen and 10 Aussie stars have been delivered the bad news that they are no longer needed by their Indian Premier League teams in 2017.
Pietersen was among a host of high-profile stars not retained by their IPL teams for next year's series, beginning in April.
He was joined in the IPL exit lounge by 10 Aussie stars, who will now be hoping to win a new contract at the IPL auction, expected to be held on February 4.
Brad Hogg (Kolkata Knight Riders), Mitchell Johnson (Kings XI Punjab) and George Bailey (Rising Pune Supergiants) have all been told they are surplus to requirements at their teams.
Test batsman Peter Handscomb (Pune), John Hastings (Kolkata), Shaun Tait (Kolkata), Nathan Coulter-Nile (Delhi Daredevils), Joel Paris (Delhi), Scott Boland (Pune) and Kane Richardson (Royal Challengers Bangalore) were also summarily dismissed from their teams.
It means the number of Australians playing in the IPL could drop to just 17 players in 2017 if none of the rejected Aussies attract a new deal.
IPL franchises have made ruthless cuts across the board ahead of the 2017 instalment with Pietersen (Pune) far from the only international superstar shown the door.
Trent Boult (Sunrisers Hyderabad), Martin Guptill (Mumbai Indians), Morne Morkel (Kolkata) and Dale Steyn (Gujarat Lions), who is recovering from shoulder surgery, have all been cut.
AUSTRALIANS CONTRACTED FOR IPL 2017
Steve Smith, Rising Pune Supergiants
Mitchell Marsh, Rising Pune Supergiants
Adam Zampa, Rising Pune Supergiants
Usman Khawaja, Rising Pune Supergiants
James Faulkner, Gujarat Lions
Aaron Finch, Gujarat Lions
Andrew Tye, Gujarat Lions
Glenn Maxwell, Kings XI Punjab
Shaun Marsh, Kings XI Punjab
Marcus Stoinis, Kings XI Punjab
Chris Lynn, Kolkata Knight Riders
David Warner, Sunrisers Hyderabad
Moises Henriques, Sunrisers Hyderabad
Ben Cutting, Sunrisers Hyderabad
Mitchell Starc, Royal Challengers Bangalore
Shane Watson, Royal Challengers Bangalore
Travis Head, Royal Challengers Bangalore