ECB Statement on Kevin Pietersen

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Post by Sangakkara on Sun 09 Feb 2014, 8:45 pm

So the ECB have released their long awaited statement on the Pietersen "sacking". I think it is welcome, and the right thing to do on their part.

It has been a matter of great frustration that until now the England and Wales Cricket Board has been unable to respond to the unwarranted and unpleasant criticism of England players and the ECB itself, which has provided an unwelcome backdrop to the recent negotiations to release Kevin Pietersen from his central contract.

Those negotiations have been successfully concluded and whilst both parties remain bound by confidentiality provisions the ECB would like to make the following comments.

The ECB recognises the significant contribution Kevin has made to England teams over the last decade. He has played some of the finest innings ever produced by an England batsman.

However, the England team needs to rebuild after the whitewash in Australia. To do that we must invest in our captain Alastair Cook and we must support him in creating a culture in which we can be confident he will have the full support of all players, with everyone pulling in the same direction and able to trust each other. It is for those reasons that we have decided to move on without Kevin Pietersen.

Following the announcement of that decision, allegations have been made, some from people outside cricket, which as well as attacking the rationale of the ECB’s decision-making, have questioned, without justification, the integrity of the England Team Director and some of England’s players.

Clearly what happens in the dressing room or team meetings should remain in that environment and not be distributed to people not connected with the team. This is a core principle of any sports team, and any such action would constitute a breach of trust and team ethics.

Whilst respecting that principle, it is important to stress that Andy Flower, Alastair Cook and Matt Prior, who have all been singled out for uninformed and unwarranted criticism, retain the total confidence and respect of all the other members of the Ashes party.

These are men who care deeply about the fortunes of the England team and its image, and it is ironic that they were the people who led the reintegration of Kevin Pietersen into the England squad in 2012.

As for the decision, I've moved somewhat towards ECB's side of things, but I still have reservations.

Whilst I agree that if a player loses his respect for the captain and is no longer "pulling in the same direction" to the point of being disruptive then they should absolutely be cut away from the side, regardless of talent.

However, it very much depends on what is defined as a loss of "respect" or a failure to "pull in the same direction".

If the mere questioning of the tactics or captaincy within a forum that was designed to air grievances free from judgement, whilst 4-0 down in a series, is seen as a lack of respect then I feel this England set-up is doomed to continued failure. The captain needs to listen to the team. The team NEEDS a dissenting voice when there are problems that need addressing. And in Australia there were copious!  

If, though, a line was crossed and Pietersen's contribution to that meeting was genuinely disrespectful, or personal, then of course he had to go. Particularly given the murky water that has already passed under the bridge. (What is "uninformed and unwarranted"? Hopefully different to "unwanted")

I know KP's no angel, and the latter is incredibly likely to be the actual scenario. I just think England and Cook should be incredibly careful with what precedent they will be setting here - and I guess the other players who were in that dressing room are the only people who will ever know what that precedent is.

If it is one where those players feel they can no longer speak up, then this is a disaster. If it is one that simply sets standards of acceptable feedback then I'm all for it.

What are people's thoughts on this reasonably strong statement?

Any changed or affirmed opinions?

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Post by kingraf on Sun 09 Feb 2014, 9:00 pm

Real blanket statement, this, and it doesn't really confirm or deny anything at all. Cook made it his mission to get KP back, and he will now be hung by the people with that very albatross. Really does remind me of the Mancini-Balotelli love affair.
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Post by guildfordbat on Sun 09 Feb 2014, 9:35 pm

Sanga - thanks for the thread and the Statement.

I might have been more disposed towards the Statement if the main thrust of it had been published when we were first told of Pietersen's sacking. Now it seems a bit too little and a bit too late.

The part about ''unwarranted and unpleasant criticism ... of the ECB itself'' struck me as particularly self pitying and plain wrong. The ECB have been deservedly slated for their failure to communicate. If it hadn't been for that criticism, we wouldn't have received even this information.

Possibly Pietersen has got his just desserts but the paying followers of the England team still deserve better. It is disappointing that the ECB have to be pushed into the release of a Statement like this rather than actually wanting to do it themselves at outset.

As for Cook, he again comes across in this Statement as a part of the property of the ECB rather than his own man. That also concerns me.

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Post by kingraf on Sun 09 Feb 2014, 9:51 pm

Here's Andrew Strauss' thoughts on the matter.

LONDON: Kevin Pietersen's England career was ended because of a total loss of trust between him and the team's management, according to former captain Andrew Strauss. The England and Wales Cricket Broad (ECB) announced the end of Pietersen's association with England earlier this week, citing a need for a new "team ethic and philosophy" after the 5-0 Test series defeat in Australia. The ECB is yet to fully explain its reasons for deciding to jettison Pietersen, but Strauss believes it was the inevitable consequence of a breakdown in trust. "Without trust, the team environment is stillborn," he wrote in British newspaper the Sunday Times. "It is for this reason that Kevin Pietersen's international career had to be brought to an end. "The media have been searching for a 'smoking gun'. Everyone is looking for disciplinary problems, bust-ups and character clashes, but they are looking for the wrong thing. "The smoking gun is the total absence of trust." Strauss identified Pietersen's dismissal as England captain five years ago as the beginning of the breakdown. He also said that efforts to reintegrate the South Africa-born batsman into the team after he was found to have sent derogatory text messages about Strauss to opposition players were "a little like marriage counselling". On Pietersen's role in the recent Ashes whitewash, Strauss added: "What happened in Australia from November onwards, when the heat of the furnace was fixed on the embattled side, was that old grievances came back to the surface. Past history weighed too heavily. Trust still did not exist. "His relationship with English cricket has been like an illicit affair. Full of thrills and excitement, but destined to end in tears."
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Post by Mike Selig on Sun 09 Feb 2014, 11:11 pm

I doubt that statement will do much if anything to calm the storm. Guildford's assessment of it as "too little, too late" is undoubtedly how it will be seen by the ECB critics, and not IMO without reason.

For me it comes across as defensive; the main thrust of the statement seems not to be to explain the rationale behind the KP decision (this is dealt with in one paragraph) but to defend the ECB and various actors against accusations which have been made (4 paragraphs if you include the opening one, which I would). That doesn't strike me as the best of balance.

There is of course nothing wrong with the ECB coming out and backing the captain and a couple of other people, but the defense to me sounds forced and overly aggressive. I agree with guildford's point about the nature of the language used also.

I think it was probably inevitable that when the statement did come it would prove underwhelming and unsatisfactory. I struggle now to think of anything the ECB can do to make things better, particularly with confidentiality agreements signed. In fact, I don't see what kind of statement they could have made today which would have satisfied their critics; I understand that perhaps the solution would have been to shut the stable door earlier, or better if you can't think of anything good to say to simply say nothing.

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Post by Guest on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 12:02 am

Sangakkara wrote:
... However, the England team needs to rebuild after the whitewash in Australia. To do that we must invest in our captain Alastair Cook and we must support him in creating a culture in which we can be confident he will have the full support of all players, with everyone pulling in the same direction and able to trust each other. It is for those reasons that we have decided to move on without Kevin Pietersen. ...

... Any changed or affirmed opinions?
It seems to have been an Alistair Cook as captain without Pietersen in team versus Alistair Cook not as captain, and Pietersen in team.  Personally I think Alistair Cook should have been relieved of England Captaincy duty - at least I don't think he has proved himself as an England Captain.

However I thought Strauss was a good Captain and yet Strauss seem to have lost trust in Pietersen & vice versa with Pietersen apparently sending derogatory comments about Strauss to the South African team. That there was probably a "sackable offence". It seems that Strauss believed it was inevitable and maybe Pietersen just "can't be trusted".


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Post by Sangakkara on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 12:05 am

Agree on the tone.

The final paragraph is actually quite colloquial/playground I think, with its sneering mention of the irony.

When do you ever see an official statement from a sporting body contain such a blatant act of point-scoring?

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Post by Hoggy_Bear on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 12:28 am

One thing I would point out is that Pietersen has consistently undermined or been at odds with England coaches and captains, in one way or another, since at least the Moores affair.
Whatever the rights and wrongs of those former episodes maybe, as Andrew Strauss has suggested, this latest example was simply the straw that broke the camel's back.
Add in the facts that KP is not getting any older, has a dodgy knee and is not in particularly great form and possibly the ECB have decided that he is no longer so indispensible to the team to be allowed to continuously attack, or disagree with, the team management.
After all, the ECB has previously continued to pick Pietersen despite what they saw as him issuing an ultimatum over Moores, despite 'textgate' and despite the rumoured ongoing clash with Flower. Maybe an attack on Flower Cook and, so it seems, Matt Prior, from someone who has not exactly been producing the goods himself recently, was just one step too far?

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Post by kingraf on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 12:45 am

Nore - I don't think Alastair would have put forward an ultimatum of that sort, by all accounts even in Australia, he was still probably one of a very minute selection of people in the KP camp. Reports suggest Cook and his mentor, Gooch got into a bit of a tiff regarding KP, with Cook acting as KP's defender... I think the reality, for Cook anyway, is that he's probably tired of defending a guy who has done him absolutely no favours post India, on or off the field, especially if as other unconfirmed reports suggest, KP went for the jugular in his attack on Cook...
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Post by Guest on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 1:02 am

The sad thing is I think this is detracting from a proper assessment of what went wrong in Australia.

I also think that now wasn't the time for knee-jerk reactions - England won the summer Ashes of 2013. It was just one lousy tour a few months later when England clearly weren't up for it.

With regard to KP it seems there were persistent trust issues. Maybe he just couldn't accept being a team player - having your say but pulling together when actually playing for the team.

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Post by msp83 on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 7:46 am

A nothing statement I would say. So what do we know afresh? Nothing really. As Guildford said, too little, too late.

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Post by msp83 on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 7:52 am

I would have had more respect for Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower had they been forthright and honest about the fake twitter account and stuff as well. Stuart Broad got away with the whole drama, and Swann as well with that book of his. People talk about lack of trust and stuff. KP would certainly have played his part in letting the scenario develop the way it did, but any suggestion that he and he alone was responsible for that is downright ludicrous, and some of them who now preach and comment from the high horse should also do an honest reflection.
Whatever the ECB do, the Pietersen question is not going away soon. But if England manage to put together some consistent good performances that will go a long way in helping them move on. But if England are not able to do well in the World T-20 and if KP manage to have a solid IPL, then the questions won't wait for the summer to come.......
A right royal mess.......

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Post by Sangakkara on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 7:53 am

Nore Staat wrote:The sad thing is I think this is detracting from a proper assessment of what went wrong in Australia.  

I also think that now wasn't the time for knee-jerk reactions - England won the summer Ashes of 2013.  It was just one lousy tour a few months later when England clearly weren't up for it.

I agree Nore. I was making this point the other day. It does feel a bit like a smoke and mirrors act. Something to fill the hole between the horror tour and hiring Flower's replacement. Just to be seen to be doing something.

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 8:30 am

What are they actually saying?

"We dont think its appropriate to get into a slanging match and drag KPS name through the dirt or anyone elses. Apprently other people do."

What are we saying?

"We prefer Jeremy Kyle to cricket"


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Post by KP_fan on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 8:44 am

Ian Chappel wrote in CI recently :
" Is KP being penalized for being different from the lot in  the dressing room...not wrong but just a different personality"

So it's out they are investing in Cook as a leader....and Cook cannot work with KP.

There are leaders that rise to surmount whatever the enormity of the challenge.....to take their organization higher.

This leader says " Limit the size of challenge to what I can handle"....and ECB agrees  Shocked 

It's like an international team tells it's board " I will compete and play only against sides that do not bowl faster than 80mph"

Boy....ECB just signed a released declaration to not rise above mediocrity  laughing


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Post by Dorothy_Mantooth on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 8:45 am

Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler wrote:What are they actually saying?

"We dont think its appropriate to get into a slanging match and drag KPS name through the dirt or anyone elses. Apprently other people do."

What are we saying?

"We prefer Jeremy Kyle to cricket"


thumbsup

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Post by kingraf on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 8:47 am

I've said it ad nausea, the ECB should just shut their mouths. One comment and now KP is suddenly the fall guy? The guy should be renamed the Teflon Don.
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Post by It Must Be Love on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 9:12 am

#BringBackKP

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Post by Mike Selig on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 10:10 am

Talk of KP being made a scapegoat when Flower has also been sacked strikes me as bizarre.

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Post by msp83 on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 10:21 am

A fine read from cricinfo's David Hopps.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/content/current/story/717765.html

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Post by msp83 on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 10:24 am

To complete their ludicrous streak, the ECB should appoint Graeme Gooch as England's coach. He's the best man to impose their philosophy on the team.......

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Post by guildfordbat on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 10:32 am

Mike Selig wrote:Talk of KP being made a scapegoat when Flower has also been sacked strikes me as bizarre.

Mike - yes, but ... there are sackings and then there are sackings.

Flower remains within the ECB and from this distance still appears to be pretty influential.

As Sanga and others have commented, there was an awful lot wrong with England's tour of Australia. I don't think even Pietersen's harshest critic would attempt to pin all the blame on him. Considerable improvements need to be made in several areas. The ECB dumping Pietersen and saying ''as you were'' is not, I hope, seen by them as the solution.

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Post by Mike Selig on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 11:01 am

No I don't buy that.

You can hardly blame the ECB of brushing things under the carpet when in response to the tour they have sacked their head coach and (previously) best batsman.

By all means disagree with the decisions, or the way they've been communicated, but to accuse the ECB of inaction and looking for scapegoats... well I just don't see that from here.

The one thing they and we all have been consistent about is the need for a fresh start. I am consistently bemused by the refusal to believe you could have a fresh start with Flower, and the parallel refusal to believe you could have one without Pietersen.

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Post by Sangakkara on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 11:49 am

I think Guildford is right though Mike. Flower has been offered a role at the ECB, and remains an influential party to the ECB. He's been reappropriated - not sacked.

Or should that be reintergrated?

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Post by Hoggy_Bear on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 11:54 am

Has Flower really got much influence?
His proposed role strikes me as a rather emphatic demotion.

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Post by Mike Selig on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 12:01 pm

He has lost his head coach role. He has been offered a relatively unrelated role in consultancy and helping drive up leadership standards. I consider that being sacked, it's not like a promotion or switch where you get asked whether you'd consider...

If tomorrow the French cricket board decide to do away with my services as a coach, but keep me on in some other role, I would undoubtedly consider that I'd been sacked and re-employed.

What influence does Flower actually have on the England cricket team anymore? I haven't seen any evidence of any yet...

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Post by alfie on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 12:02 pm

I have never been an anti-Pietersen person.  I loved his batting , and accepted that while some of his behaviour might have been a bit questionable , his teammates seemed by and large happy to put up with it in the common cause.  I am sorry to see his Test career end in this manner.
But I cannot for one moment believe that the ECB , or Cook , or anyone has deliberately got rid of one of the most brilliant batsmen in the business just because he spoke his mind too forcefully in a team meeting. That sounds like a big fat red herring...
Pretty obvious there were serious issues which led them to conclude that KP 's occasional brilliance was no longer worth the risk of keeping him in the squad. Serious issues which are never likely to be revealed due to confidentiality agreements which have apparently been signed.
So whether people like it or not , that's it.  Those who love a good conspiracy theory will never let it go ; but if KP were employed in any other capacity and had his contract terminated due to some dispute with his superiors everyone would surely accept the right of all parties to agree to keep details out of the public domain : why should it be different for a cricketer ?

Maybe I'm getting grumpy in my old age but this ongoing saga is becoming tedious already.

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Post by banbrotam on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 12:16 pm

Can all those wanting a 'better' explanation or not happy with this one, explain why on earth one should be neccessary

As Ed Smith says in this excellent piece on the Beeb website, did Sir Alex give one when he got rid of Van Nistelroy, Stamm, Beckham, Keane etc? Has anyone asked what the real reasons are for Vidic's departure

And that's just Man U!!

I sometimes wonder if cricket is a bit naive and immature for these times. An explanation would be deadly and only strenghtens the detractors

"It is impossible to imagine that three pragmatic men decided to act against their own professional self-interest just because they couldn't be bothered to make the extra effort of "managing" someone"

writes Smith in his piece. Can't those on these boards moaning on about inadequate explanations, get it? KP was lucky to escape the Moores incident and even more so with Strauss. Add in a 12 month average of 33 and what's left to discuss

A while ago my football club cancelled the contract of a player. Did we demand a 'full' explanation? No, of course we didn't

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Post by msp83 on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 1:33 pm

Mike Selig wrote:No I don't buy that.

You can hardly blame the ECB of brushing things under the carpet when in response to the tour they have sacked their head coach and (previously) best batsman.

By all means disagree with the decisions, or the way they've been communicated, but to accuse the ECB of inaction and looking for scapegoats... well I just don't see that from here.

The one thing they and we all have been consistent about is the need for a fresh start. I am consistently bemused by the refusal to believe you could have a fresh start with Flower, and the parallel refusal to believe you could have one without Pietersen.
Mike, there is an obvious difference between Flower and Pietersen isn't it? Flower was the head coach or Director of Cricket or whatever, and as such he was the one who was setting the agenda for the team and mapping out paths to achieve the goals. Pietersen had no such positions, and despite being a senior batsman, he hasn't been a significant part of the management group. And also worth remembering that Pietersen was the top scorer for England in the series.

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Post by msp83 on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 1:48 pm

While Andrew Strauss talked about the 'lack of trust', Steve Harmison had something different to say.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/content/current/story/717737.html

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Post by guildfordbat on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 2:02 pm

alfie wrote:

Maybe I'm getting grumpy in my old age but this ongoing saga is becoming tedious already.

Alfie - sorry you're finding this one tedious. We all though have to accept that no one drags us kicking and screaming to a particular thread. There again, it does feel that if I had a quid for every time banbrotam mentions ''a 12 month average of 33'' I could afford to fly out to Australia to discuss it with you in person and have enough change left over to buy us a few jars.  Wink 

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Post by Sangakkara on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 2:09 pm

msp83 wrote:
Mike Selig wrote:No I don't buy that.

You can hardly blame the ECB of brushing things under the carpet when in response to the tour they have sacked their head coach and (previously) best batsman.

By all means disagree with the decisions, or the way they've been communicated, but to accuse the ECB of inaction and looking for scapegoats... well I just don't see that from here.

The one thing they and we all have been consistent about is the need for a fresh start. I am consistently bemused by the refusal to believe you could have a fresh start with Flower, and the parallel refusal to believe you could have one without Pietersen.
Mike, there is an obvious difference between Flower and Pietersen isn't it? Flower was the head coach or Director of Cricket or whatever, and as such he was the one who was setting the agenda for the team and mapping out paths to achieve the goals. Pietersen had no such positions, and despite being a senior batsman, he hasn't been a significant part of the management group. And also worth remembering that Pietersen was the top scorer for England in the series.

But even though Pietersen was the highest scorer on the tour, if he hadn't been there, then someone else would have been.

Therefore he had a negative effect on the rest of the team.

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Post by Stella on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 2:09 pm

Time to move on. He's gone for non cricketing reasons, as to which we're all guessing about.
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Post by guildfordbat on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 2:15 pm

msp83 wrote:A fine read from cricinfo's David Hopps.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/content/current/story/717765.html

I thought that was a very fine article indeed. Certainly highlights and articulates well my concerns. Interesting and reassuring to read that I am far from alone.

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Post by msp83 on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 2:19 pm

That Hopps article mentioned that Cook and Pietersen had a disagreement on the focus of practice. Pietersen wanted practicing cricketing skills but the session it seems, was oriented towards fitness....... And then, I came across this very interesting read.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/thestands/content/story/717821.html

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 3:01 pm

BCCI wants KP in the IPL Whistle 
ECB suddenly mysteriously gets to be an equal partner with the BCCI after years of being their mortal enemy
ECB makes KP available for IPL

If in doubt, blame BCCI

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 3:27 pm

Mike Selig wrote:No I don't buy that.

You can hardly blame the ECB of brushing things under the carpet when in response to the tour they have sacked their head coach and (previously) best batsman.

By all means disagree with the decisions, or the way they've been communicated, but to accuse the ECB of inaction and looking for scapegoats... well I just don't see that from here.

The one thing they and we all have been consistent about is the need for a fresh start. I am consistently bemused by the refusal to believe you could have a fresh start with Flower, and the parallel refusal to believe you could have one without Pietersen.

Straight after the Ashes people moan about ECB's lack action.
ECB take action.
People still moan.

People
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Post by guildfordbat on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 3:35 pm

Olly wrote:

Straight after the Ashes people moan about ECB's lack action.
ECB take action.
People still moan.

People


Some people moan about Norwich FC.

If the Divine Delia sacked Hoolahan and Hooper without explanation, people would still moan.

People

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Post by Guest on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 3:37 pm

get over it and move on. It's happened im pretty sure everyone roughly knows what's gone on, the decision clearly won't be reversed, its time to plan for the future!

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Post by Sangakkara on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 3:44 pm

You are entitled to think a decision is poor. You don't have to draw a line under everything.

I thought taking Theo Walcott to the World Cup in 2006 at the expense of Darren Bent was an error.
To this day I still think it was an error.
If asked my opinion on it, I would still say it was an error. Not... "it's done now, forget about it".

You don't have to have closure on an opinion.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 4:33 pm

guildfordbat wrote:
Olly wrote:

Straight after the Ashes people moan about ECB's lack action.
ECB take action.
People still moan.

People


Some people moan about Norwich FC.

If the Divine Delia sacked Hoolahan and Hooper without explanation, people would still moan.


People

Let's not bring the lovely Delia into this Guildford  Wink 
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Post by kingraf on Mon 10 Feb 2014, 6:00 pm

jeez I really wish I had KP's ability to fart in a room and have everyone argue he actually released scented Chanel no5.
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Post by Guest on Tue 11 Feb 2014, 1:06 am

How much influence & power will the new English coach have?  Will he be able to choose his captain?  Could he say I don't want Cook as captain I want him to focus on his batting.  Will he be able to select the players to play for him - including Pietersen if he wanted him?

It seems to me the new coach is going to have a minor role / influence compared to say Alistair Cook and the Chief Exec. Consequently it seems to me not many good coaches will be interested in taking up the position. They will have to go for a yes man who is part of the old boy ECB system.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/cricket/26115751

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler on Tue 11 Feb 2014, 3:41 am

Nore,

The control coaches have over selections has been increased in recent times, cricket is traditionally very different to other sports in that regard. Part of the problem of course is that theyve had to start naming squads an ensuring players are available, not to mention the central contracts system before a new coach is even found.
The ECB isnt unique in this, at least they no longer have the same level of politics and corruption in selections that certain other boards do. Let just say its a much better gig than PCB anyway!
And lets face it, everyone already knows its Giles taking over.

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Post by kingraf on Tue 11 Feb 2014, 3:52 am

Clive Woodward comments highlight a rather strange thought. The captain shouldn't pick the team? Should the coach also make the bowling changes? Stand in the slips?

Unless we start allowing transmitters where the coach can tell the captain what to do, I can't understand how letting the man in the middle, who has to decide who does what. or who has to bowl the death overs when things haven't gone in accordance with the prophecy, is from a bygone era. This isn't rugby.
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Post by alfie on Tue 11 Feb 2014, 11:11 am

guildfordbat wrote:
alfie wrote:

Maybe I'm getting grumpy in my old age but this ongoing saga is becoming tedious already.

Alfie - sorry you're finding this one tedious. We all though have to accept that no one drags us kicking and screaming to a particular thread. There again, it does feel that if I had a quid for every time banbrotam mentions ''a 12 month average of 33'' I could afford to fly out to Australia to discuss it with you in person and have enough change left over to buy us a few jars.  Wink 

Haha ...yes you have me there , guildford  Smile  In fact I was not unaware of the contradiction involved as I posted that ...but being a bit tired and ratty went ahead anyway...sorry....

Of course this was always going to get a ton of attention : I do understand how many people - not just you and Hopps - are less than satisfied with the "explanations" being put out over this. But I really don't think you are likely to get anything more conclusive , no matter how many column inches are devoted to the matter.

I suppose my chief irritation with this and other discussions is that as no really new information is being released - and none seems likely , mainly for legal reasons , to follow - all we are getting is constant repetitions of everyone's original view on the subject ....I guess it comes down to whether or not one is prepared to accept that the ECB are not being totally irrational in their actions. Obviously without access to all the details it is impossible to judge how much logic they have to justify the choice they have made. But on one level , isn't that the case with any selection decision (normally without the drama , of course ) ? Those who are charged with picking the players to represent England have to make their decisions based on what they see as the best course for the good of the team...and not everyone will agree with them. In 2005 , not everyone was happy with the decision to move Thorpe on and introduce Pietersen ... Or in 2008 , Hoggard being pensioned off in favour of Anderson didn't meet with universal approval...at the end of the day , the selectors make their choice , and if it works out well sympathy for the unlucky player tends to fade beside the supporters' pleasure in ongoing success. When the decisions are seen to be less than successful (large numbers of choices made in the latter part of the last century !) the selectors cop a measure of criticism ...and suffer a bit of turnover themselves...
This is different because it is not totally down to form (despite the recent average of just 33  devil ) but is partly a matter of intangible qualities. But are they not still reasonable grounds for consideration ? Other men may have taken a different decision from the same weighing of risk/reward ; and who knows , may have had the right of it ? But I cannot see that this - admittedly drastic - termination of a career is axiomatically wrong : and I also cannot imagine that it would be possible for any statement put out by the ECB to completely satisfy everyone's understandable curiosity...especially if Strauss (who might know a bit ) is correct in his assessment that there is no single incident that has precipitated the decision ; but rather a pattern of behaviour which just isn't considered in England's best interests.

Anyway enough from me ...don't want to contribute too much more to the ever-swelling mountain of words on this  Smile 

But at least Surrey will get good value from Pietersen this season from the look of things ...is that so bad ?

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler on Tue 11 Feb 2014, 11:59 am

kingraf wrote:Clive Woodward comments highlight a rather strange thought. The captain shouldn't pick the team? Should the coach also make the bowling changes? Stand in the slips?

Unless we start allowing transmitters where the coach can tell the captain what to do, I can't understand how letting the man in the middle, who has to decide who does what. or who has to bowl the death overs when things haven't gone in accordance with the prophecy, is from a bygone era. This isn't rugby.

Its worth pointing out that SCW has become a professional poo-pooer now. His record post 2003 as a leading "sports expert" has been pretty appalling. Even in rugby matters Im beginning to find his opinions increasingly irrelevant.

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Post by guildfordbat on Tue 11 Feb 2014, 1:19 pm

alfie wrote:
...

But at least Surrey will get good value from Pietersen this season from the look of things ...is that so bad ?

Hi Alfie - in the words of Alec Stewart, ''not just great for Surrey but great for the domestic game as well''.

From a personal point of view I would rather Pietersen be signed up to be playing the 4 day stuff although am still pleased, particularly when noting the odd CC match is not ruled out.

Despite my heavy criticisms of the ECB, I do not claim that the termination of Pietersen's England career is ''axiomatically wrong'' (to quote you earlier in your post). It is just that from what has been communicated by the ECB (Sunday's announcement was a step forward, albeit tiny and belated which lessened its effect), I cannot be satisfied that it is axiomatically right.

I take your point that it is the job of the selectors to select. It is their role to drop man A and replace him with Man B if and when they consider it appropriate to do so having weighed up all things in the mix. I do not expect chapter and verse on that. I also do not expect chapter and verse on Pietersen. However, the Pietersen situation is different to me (I appreciate not to some others) in view of its significance and, by its very nature, its finality. Thus, I'm disappointed - particularly as a keen and paying follower of the game - not to have been communicated with anything more meaningful.

I'll pretty much let this go now on here as my views have been more than sufficiently expressed and, frankly, continued repeating of them will make no difference (other than to bore you further which, perhaps surprisingly, has never been my objective.  Smile ). However, I certainly don't blame David Hopps if he wants to continue the fight on ESPN cricinfo.

In words attributed to the eighteenth century philosopher and statesman, Edmund Burke - ''All it takes for evil to flourish is for good men to do nothing.'' Now I'm sure our Edmund was thinking of far more important life and death matters than the make up of a cricket team at the time but I think it still conveys the importance of speaking up to those who count for what you believe in. If Hopps can and wants to do that, good luck to him!

A couple of final points and then that's my lot.

I know that Alec Stewart is angered and surprised by Pietersen's dismissal. Given Pietersen's appalling track record in getting up the noses of those he has played with and for previously, it is puzzling that Stewart - normally a stickler for getting, doing and looking right in all things at all times (even in a tracksuit at members's forums at the Oval he manages to look smarter than those in suits alongside him!) - and the rest of Surrey's management and players hold him in genuine high regard. There is genuine liking for the man, not just the runscorer.

In sacking Pietersen, England do appear to be putting a lot of eggs in Cook's basket; Cook, a man whose captaincy is at best unproven and who has an average from his last 20 Test innings of 26.15. That may ultimately still prove to be a masterful decision but I remain unconvinced on the evidence so far before me.


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Post by Sangakkara on Tue 11 Feb 2014, 1:48 pm

I think this is a pretty good piece on how embarrassing this whole situation has been for everyone.

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2014/feb/11/the-spin-kevin-pietersen-icc-chairman

It's been the exact opposite of damage limitation.
What is that?
Damage liberalism?

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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler on Tue 11 Feb 2014, 1:58 pm

[quote="guildfordbat"]
alfie wrote:
...

In sacking Pietersen, England do appear to be putting a lot of eggs in Cook's basket; Cook, a man whose captaincy is at best unproven and who has an average from his last 20 Test innings of 26.15. That may ultimately still prove to be a masterful decision but I remain unconvinced on the evidence so far before me.


IUt not sacking him theyd be putting a hell of a lot in KPS. At least Cook wont die of old age in the next 2 years.

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