I make no apology for commemorating this date. Even after a wonderful, fluent, thrilling, exciting ODI batting performance, the point remains.
February 4th. It is now two years since Kevin Pietersen was sacked as an England international cricketer.
Note to some of you who are reading this. In case there is a problem understanding this, the book “KP” was released in October 2014. By my maths, 8 months after his sacking. Therefore, it did not cause his dismissal.
I know. A number of you are rolling your eyes right now. “The book showed why he shouldn’t be playing”. Hang about, what did that have to do with the attitude shown by our cricketing authorities towards the cricket supporters when the dismissal took place? Sweet eff all, is the answer. I know, a number of yo are rolling your eyes “we’ve moved on, we’ve an exciting team, we’ve won the Ashes, we’ve won at the World #1 team”.
It’s what the sacking meant, it’s what it means now. It’s what, as one of my twitter friends says, the cause (I’d say more a very effective catalyst, but let’s not split atoms….) of the schism now. It still has a profound effect on the team, the support, the media and for this blogger.
In those two years we’ve watched people contort themselves in many twisted arguments not to go back to Pietersen. We’ve seen the funnies – the lack of form argument always tickled me, as did the “he is on the decline” right through to “no vacancies in the middle order” – and those who think he still texted the South Africans telling them how to get Andrew Strauss out. There’s those of pure blind hatred, who I sort of respect more, because they use the “I hate him” line. They used it before England sacked him. That’s daft, but it’s honest.
My line has been consistent. Pick your team on merit. All along. Not deviated. If KP is one of the best four middle order players, then play him. The only thing that would prevent that is gross insubordination, and even then, I’d want the causes of why that happened to be investigated too. That has never been suggested, as far as I know, by anyone in authority. If they did, they’d be on firm grounds legally and that would be that.
The anniversary is to note. We won’t pick him for the T20 World Cup. We certainly won’t for tests or ODIs. Strauss hates his guts. To climb down on this would be remarkable. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t recall the day he was sacked. It was the first of a number of “up yours” to the supporters, and the more important one is commemorated in five days time.
Roll your eyes all you want, those who visit here to get riled up. We ain’t going away.
Remind me – did you cheer this?
Thanks to all the commenters for the last two years. The significance of this decision brought most of you here. Five days later we were to have our tag……
Oh. And in case you think I’m obsessed, there’s nothing like the Daily Mail…
Good grief. Before I get started KP is in Dubai to play PSL starting tonight 4th. Was with team members. Don’t sports writers ever do their homework? I have felt for KP every day of those 2 years.He is my favourite batsman and has been since 2005.I have met him, followed him on twitter and will always respect and admire him.I don’t know of another sportsman who has been treated as deplorably as he has and for what reason? We still haven’t been told.Thanks ECB and Mr Strauss.Love some of the young Eng players but still find myself hoping they lose It’s all so sad. Will follow KP till he finally “stows his bat” and hope it’s not before he gets an apology from Eng cricket and a chance to say goodbye to all his followers.😢😢
LikeLiked by 1 person
Was with team members shocker!
Don’t give them any ammo.
“Perhaps he was working hard…”.
That is a gem. A gift to the likes of us.
Is that all you’ve got?
Someone post those recent stats for Pietersen v England’s provisional WT20 middle order…
Anyway, real fans don’t care. Real fans know why he was sacked and agree with the decision. Real fans know the press release meant Piers Morgan alone. Real fans get behind the lads. Real fans think calling people c**ts is great. Some real fans think KP might have a mental illness. Some real fans wish he’d never played for England.
Real fans dominate the MSM.
LikeLiked by 1 person
And yet every poll I’ve seen on whether he should return for England returns between 83 & 87% votes in favour
LikeLiked by 1 person
The Sun did do a poll which found the opposite, but then refused to disseminate the results from behind the paywall. Shame really, it would have been interesting to read and analyse.
Interesting – I wasn’t aware. However, I do wonder about a vote behind a paywall being properly representative?
Some would wonder if Sun readers are a properly representative group
LikeLiked by 1 person
Have a read, if you like:
Note that Nasser, contrary to the general impression, started early.
“But history tells you with Kevin he hasn’t really got a foot to stand on – whether it be back in Natal or Hampshire or Nottinghamshire, or Peter Moores or Andrew Strauss or Alastair Cook or Andy Flower, wherever he has been he has been a problem.
“Eventually English cricket has said ‘enough is enough’.”
He could never win, could he? The lies and exaggerations have followed him since he showed he had talent.They still are of course because it seems to be the favourite pastime of the press, even now to put him down.Note the Daily Mail article yesterday.Totally wrong in trying to belittle him and adding a few more lies.How do these people live with themselves? Some people believe what they read and so the stories about KP keep growing.
Here’s someone far less significant who also started early:
westcorkthinktank 4 Feb 2014 19:30
So Kevin’s gone. Here’s hoping he takes some of his boorish followers with him. It is too early to tell whether English cricket will be better for it, but the Guardian cricket pages should be.
It’d be much better without that censorious sycophant. The Guardian’s very own btl moderator.
Much as I despise Strauss’, Flower’s and Cook’s role in this, (and Downton, ‘Four Ballance’ Whitaker, the media etc.), the main culprit must be Clarke.
BTW, some interesting comments under that article if you start from the oldest. Yes, a massive schism still exists, despite the ECB’S media’s best efforts to brush everything under the carpet and ‘move on’.
I was referring to the old Guardian article!
One of the comments made me spit a grape out:
“I’m giving the ECB the benefit of the doubt because these are smart business people who, if there’s one thing they’ll know, it’ll be where their money is.”
The much-missed simonk provides the definitive analysis, but it’s buried on page 7.
And this is after the ECB smartypants being such smart business people they got into bed with Stanford.
Cheers Dimitri, I don’t comment here a lot but I have been reading your, and TLG’s, superb work for what feels like a lifetime. There is a pasted up piece on the wall near where I live which describes street art as “Being knee deep in the shit, but despite it you keep on whistling”, or words to that effect (it is written in German, originally). Presumably it is not meant as a comment on the torpor of the Guardian’s cricket writing and the experience of trawling through the increasingly depressing comments, but it sums it all up nicely.
But I stopped being able to keep whistling some time ago. The shit went up higher than knee deep, it’s got up past my cheeks and I won’t go back there again. Your blog has, at least, put a tune back to my lips, so thank you both for that.
I don’t really know why I feel compelled to bore you all with this but I do; here’s an aside, if I may.
On a rapidly darkening evening in Mumbai 2012 I was leaving the bowels of the Wankhede with my Dad with him giggling like a schoolgirl. “Astonishing” was all he could say, and he kept repeating it over and over again. He is a sensible man, my Dad, and unlike myself, is certainly not prone to hyperbole. But again and again, he whispered it like a mantra.
“Astonishing. Just a-ston-ish-ing”.
He said that KP had just scored possibly the finest innings he had ever seen in over 60 years of watching cricket and I had no reason to doubt him. He bounced on his toes, his eyes flashed. We got drunk that night having left the majority of our party eating steak and chips in a sterile western hotel and he couldn’t stop talking about KP. We have never talked about anything personal, really. Our relationship is founded on football and cricket, on music and drink and the odd smoke, we don’t need anything else to talk about.
He is a respected authority on the game, a serious man who believes strongly that politics and sport are deeply entrenched, and he passed that on to me. My first experience of the game was when he introduced me to Malcolm Marshall and Gordon Greenidge as I was about seven or eight years old. Ostensibly the purpose was to get their autographs for me, but, honestly, it was all about him having the opportunity to bask in their glories for just a moment.
When the captain got out at the Wankhede I will never forgot the image of KP chasing after Alastair Cook to congratulate him on a superb innings and, so it seemed to me at the time, to thank him for his support in rehabilitating him. It looked like KP was saying, through the international language of the fist bump, “Thanks Skip’, you put your feet up and I’ll take care of things from here. You can trust me”.
Would it were so that some would remember that they batted sublimely together, they complemented one another, and that KP was happy to see Cook excel for the team and for himself. Would it were so that KP wouldn’t be discarded iin such a disgraceful, cowardly and childish manner when he still had much to offer to every cricket fan, whether they were English or not.
We spent another fortnight in India together and that innings kept coming back when things went quiet at the table. This is a personal take, but then sport is a personal thing. I consider myself lucky that I have got my Dad to still teach me about the game, and that cricket has given us something to talk about.
I have rarely seen the old man happier than that evening having watched the innings of a lifetime, and (if you’ll excuse my language) I fucking despise the English cricketing establishment for what they have deprived him and me of, out of of nothing more than spite.
Keep on fighting, Gentlemen. You are appreciated.
LikeLiked by 9 people
Localboy. Welcome. I’ve got to go to a meeting now but wanted to thank you for this comment. These make doing the blog all worthwhile.
That was wonderful.
Great comment. I was lucky enough to be there for that test too. My fiance attends a lot of cricket with me and some of it does pass her by a bit but most of the cricketing memories that have stayed with her involve watching innings from KP.
That fortnight we spent in India, we hadn’t been together long and it was our first holiday together and its a shame that there will be no more opportunities to see him play innings like this.
Just a brilliant thought provoking post, Local boy!
That was chuffing great, localboy. I know what you mean when you say: I fu*k*ng despise the English cricketing establishment for what they have deprived him and me of, out of of nothing more than spite.
But you also made me fill up at least twice with references to your Dad. I shared a few of those such moments when Beefy was in his pomp. My dad never saw KP in an England shirt. He would’ve adored KP, and he never had any time for the top brass.
The one good thing about the KP sacking was it revealed in all its glory the English cricket media to be a lying, duplicitous, dishonest bunch of half witts, huckster, and c***. It showed that most of them have the morality of a snake oil salesman. Lying is their stock in trade. Oh and smooching with their cricket masters. They would roast their grannies on spits if would advance their agenda a tiny fraction. As it is a bit of cheap corporate hospitality is all that is required. Revolting people. Fake from the top of their heads to the bottom of their toes.
As a result I no longer buy a newspaper. I don’t waste my money on their double dealing. And the reality is hardly anyone else wants to read their ECB party political broadcasts either. That’s why so many of them keep slipping a KP story into their work. A piece about Ben Stokes is not complete without a KP reference. Otherwise no one would bother reading it. (And they know it’s true!) You begin to wonder if these fakes are in every department of a newspaper? The business section, the political section, all full of liars and con artists. The entire Englisn corporate media could go bust tomorrow, and Britian would only improve as a nation.
They are locked into a fake embrace with their equally horrible few readers. Doomed for eternity together. Oh how they deserve each other. The fake friendliness, the pretend decency, and the dishonest pearl clutching . The Nashville Pams of this world need their prejudices fired and stoking every day.
This anniversary should be used to celebrate this site and others who have stood firm against the hurricane of bullshit. Long may this site offer a platform for those who want to point and laugh at the freak show that is the English cricket elite. KP is gone and is never coming back, but the ridicule of those people responsible, and those who lied for them will never end. I love the 2005 Ashes even more today because I know how much the stupid people (the so called real fans) now hate it. (They’ve admitted it! )
So thanks for getting rid of KP because in doing so you revealed yourselves as the real C***s!
LikeLiked by 3 people
Forgive me if I’ve said this before. I gave up newspapers years ago, mainly because I realised that truth wasn’t important to them. Final straw, a report on Botham’s last Oval test I attended, which was so factually incorrect that it was clear the Mail’s cricket reporter wasn’t there. He even had the giant crane doing reconstruction on the wrong side of the ground.
The hacks, like any of us, are entitled to an opinion. I’m just not remotely interested.
The DM article says KP “did choose to include a rather provocative caption: ‘When in Dubai… thanks, @moalhashimi1! Lovely company.’ “.
Pardon me but what exactly is provocative about that?
Perhaps if I look closely enough I’ll figure it out, eh Stephen?
If only we all had an “instinctive feel” for cricket, we’d all be much happier and would have moved on
LikeLiked by 2 people
Whoever that clown is who wrote that article he is a complete c**t!!!
I am as big of a KP fan as there could be to be honest. Simply he gave me the greatest highs of watching cricket for England and now the various franchises he has played for.
The way a legend, yes legend, of England is treated with his name constantly dragged through the press gutter courtesy of the daily mail, guardian etc is nothing short of slanderous. I just hate now those who read the sh1t churned out by the MSM are brainwashed with their lies and accusations.
It will never ever happen but if he somehow did comeback at the WT20 I would laugh for about a week I think.
…and with all the news and reaction to the ICC reforms spilling out….. Guardian web cricket main story is…… some ex-banker joins board of Aston Villa…. and not a peep about the ICC still – geez
Usual sources on Twitter best place to go for now. ICC press release here:
LikeLiked by 1 person
Reminder that we were all guilty of talking a load of misty-eyed cobblers, the proposals were the best available and that it was always better to have India inside the tent pissing out.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Yeah. Let’s stay sober:
The Guardian has lost all credibility. It preferred to protect its head cricket writer and his half baked theories, and his pompous arrogant manner.
Their coverage of the ICC is compromised by their cricket writers relationship with Giles Clarke. Very un professional for the editors to allow this to happen.
LikeLiked by 1 person
I should think so too. Whatever’s going on at Villa Park will always be the most important story on any given day.
Only mistake is – it should be in the comedy section!
At least you have the Broncos, Kev. Try being a Millwall AND Dolphins fan.
You might be playing Millwall next year Kev. Dmitri and you could sit in the posh seats!
LikeLiked by 1 person
Dmitri – Fair point! Although talk to me after Sunday. I’ve seen us play 5 Superbowls – and basically we either win or get monstered. There’s nothing in between. There’s no sportsman I admire more than Peyton Manning, and I’ll be devastated for him if we lose. All the “Peyton bombs in the playoffs” stuff will start up again – which I think is so incredibly unfair.
Mark – Dmitri and I swapped some Villa/Millwall memories this week! If the posh seats want to wait another year, there’s a good chance we could be playing them in League One. Randy Lerner ruins every team he touches and Christ knows where we’ll be this time next year.
This is very strange website in cricket. All kp no about the good English team you have. I sad for me English have best team in all T20 ODI and test. You should be happy. You very strange if you hate good English team you are not good cricket people here. I happy for English team. I supporter of cricket all my life now I love English cricket team.
I think Localboy’s post covered this, didn’t it?
Giles, is that you?
I also like the English cricket team. At least there are two of us Dallia!
PS. Are you for real? 🙂
Judging that it’s an IP address in the UK….. you can draw your own judgement.
Probably another cold call from Windows Technical Department
Hello again Neil
Good news regarding piles Clarke master plan is falling down in front of his eyes…hopefully….scum bag.
Also enjoy the tweets from certain people who still like coming to this site but not commenting. Prefer to whinge about it to people on Twitter. You know the usual culprits.
Would be nice if this day was remembered as the day Clarkes reign started to come to end and rather than the sacking of the greatest English batsman in the last 30 years. A certain symmetry at least
I’d have been rather disappointed if they hadn’t. Well, that’s if I give a stuff.
Because, let’s face it, this is what the blog is only about.
BTW – the blog hit rate for a quiet non-match day is extraordinary which proves that the issue still resonates. Good. It should.
It only resonates with ‘oddballs’ of a ‘bilious and inadequate’ nature though..
My message just disappeared again into thin air
This a test job.
Mark. Check your mail. In a few.
Gower called us “social media numpties” once. Do you think he ever saw the twitter photo of Sir Ian’s sausage?
Great post from localboy up there. I was living in New Zealand at the time of that innings and remember watching it in bed on an illegal stream on the laptop with a quite extraordinary hangover. Breathtaking stuff.
Still nothing from our friends over at The Guardian…
Heaven forbid reporting something that actually is news, rather than the standard hagiographies of the ECB/Strauss/Cook (delete as applicable)…
Their ‘chief cricket correspondent’ knows who pays his wages…