As Easy As ABD…That’s From Me

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From 2008. AB.

You’ve got me. TLG was at The Who last night, and is working(ish) today, so it’s Dmitri for your “sort of” match report.

In the end we were well beaten today. Alex Hales can hold his head high. Reece Topley can do so too. The rest… well we’ll be charitable and say some might look at themselves. However, to use an awful phrase, the direction of travel is still pointing the correct way. Setbacks are natural.

There’s a temptation to view ODI cricket as black and white. England’s previous tactics, exemplified in the World Cup, were out of date, out of time and out of ideas. The new approach is attacking, aggressive, more in tune with the requirements of the 50 over game. The meme today is that the latter is good, except when it doesn’t work.My personal view is that this is exceptionally lazy, and easy, punditry. Laud the excitement, scold them for being reckless. It’s called having your cake and eating it. Nasser Hussain, I’m talking about you.

Too many were bemoaning the England team hitting out and getting out, and not “playing the conditions”. Remember when we scored the 400 at Edgbaston last year – it wasn’t from 200 for 1. The punditerati seem to love this attacking stuff, except when it fails. You have to wonder if they are suffering from ADHD or something. I expect it from professional Yorkshiremen (and shiny toy ones too). You need to work out what is most likely to win. There’s commitment to the plan. That’s not a bad thing, as a whole.

The fact is that these games are of their moment. England won the World T20 in 2010, and have not won an international tournament other than that (I mean ICC of course). These bilateral series scarcely have any relevance. We beat New Zealand in a decider last June, and lost to Australia in a decider in September, but we don’t really recall them (you hear anyone mention Bairstow’s Houdini act in the NZ game?). This is the journey to massive event, and there will be bumps along the way. The only way to win games consistently playing this way is to continue to play this way. I know some will rue the lack of brains (I did) and it’s a fair comment, but this team approaches a game aiming for 300 minimum. I’d rather see them fail in trying than just whimper up to a score.

Well done to Alex Hales for his sensible, well-made hundred. Sure, his partners let him down, but it’s still good to see the tyro opener knuckle down and make a century. This will do him the world of good. He’s had a fine series. Reece Topley’s opening spell opened up the match, but class and experience in AB and Hashim steadied the ship and then took the game by the scruff of the neck. While this is a young England team, it’s also a quite young South African bowling attack, and the differencce in ODI caps, as Simon pointed out earlier, isn’t vast. But experience is married with maturity in the senior pros in the home team, and this was clever, sensible batting chasing a mediocre total.

Lots will be made that we lost a series from 2-0 up. Shrug your shoulders. So what? The next two international tournaments at 50 over level are being played on our fair shores. Let’s get to be the best in those conditions. These overseas jaunts sell tickets for home grounds, get people watching on TV, and can provide some stunning entertainment. But they mean little. We all know that. We know now what we knew before, but with more evidence.

Hales – more solid presence at the top of the order, and now nailed on for his spot after top scoring this series.

Roy – Still more miss than hit. Might find himself under pressure.

Root – World class, the anchor man who scores at a decent lick. Two centuries in losing causes. First batting name on sheet.

Morgan – Disappointing with the bat. Disappointed with him for that interview. Sure it’s a coincidence the series went downhill after that.

Buttler – One magnificent hundred, one impressive closure, then failed. He’s this team in a nutshell. When he’s good, we’re very very good.

Stokes – Absolutely infuriating at this form of the game. Some good contributions but we know there is more.

Ali – Frustrating series. I await the siren calls to get him to open if Roy doesn’t make some strides.

Rashid – You know, I like him. Bowled well when I saw him. He’s not going to be lights out.

Broad – Not really made a compelling case to play in this squad, rather than just save him for tests.

Woakes – The dullest enigma going. Some like him, some don’t. Good squad man.

Willey – Absolutely not convinced he’s international class.

Topley – Made some strides. I’m not convinced he’s the solution, but I’m also sure he’s not the problem.

Jordan – Doesn’t appear to have progressed. Got to be under pressure.

Be interested to hear your thoughts.

AB was majestic after a relatively quiet South African summer. He took his time to get in, and had the luxury of knowing a target in doing so, and timed it to perfection. It was a wonderful captain’s innings. It clinched a series that looked lost. He reminded us of his ability. Appreciate it while it is here.

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Another from 2008
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65 thoughts on “As Easy As ABD…That’s From Me

    • Tony Bennett Feb 14, 2016 / 7:11 pm

      You are forgiven, since (we must assume) there will be few, if any, opportunities to see them again. I did it three times and those are unforgettable occasions.

      Like

  1. Tony Bennett Feb 14, 2016 / 7:16 pm

    Can I possibly be alone in wondering whether England’s selection strategy made sense in this series? It seems to me that the team management don’t feel confident about either Stokes or Ali as members of a five-man bowling attack. Therefore, we have to have a six-man bowling attack, which in turn means only four specialist batsmen. I’ve got a problem with that. I don’t see consistent success likely to arise from a four specialist batsmen line-up. James Taylor, what must he think? Selection-wise, you must have Taylor. That means Ali or Stokes has to be the fifth bowler. I know what I’d do.

    Like

  2. SimonH Feb 14, 2016 / 8:31 pm

    Curious that Newman’s lengthy report that throws plenty of flak at England’s reckless batting mentions every dismissal – except Morgan’s. Newman hasn’t exactly been Morgan’s best chum in the past.

    A suspicious mind might think that, having done what was required of him, Morgan’s getting a free pass. So that’s what I’m thinking.

    Like

    • Mark Feb 14, 2016 / 9:29 pm

      Oh yes, they seem to have anointed Morgan to almost Cook status now. The Nasser interview, mid series looks like another blunder. Was it really required just to give us the finger? I don’t think so. They keep telling us to move on, yet they hold a pro active interview on the anniversary of you know what. They just won’t let it go. Anyway, it’s all blown up, and they are left with dollops of egg on their face again. 2-0 becomes 2-3.

      This team is exciting but still Neieve. At the moment people will stick with it. But if they keep getting bowled out for 45 odd overs it’s going to be a problem. It isn’t a problem at the moment though. However if they reach a WC semi final and they are 7 down with 10 overs left, I think they will have to reign it in and bat the 50 overs. Will they though? I do hope they reject Ali going up to open. Englands bowling is not strong enough to win a match if the batsman fail. It’s all on the batsman. Do or die. If they get 300 plus they are in the game.

      This series has rather ominous overtones with that interview with Morgan. The ECB seem to be saying to us “why don’t you F*** off.” They are so clueless as to how to build a brand. Be it the national game or the international game. It’s Basil Faulty type management.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. alan Feb 14, 2016 / 9:48 pm

    I feel like Dmitri in that I’m no longer emotionaly engaged with the England team but I’ve watched most of this one day series. The thing that has struck me particularly in the last two games is the crowd. I was 10 years old when the Sharpville massacre occurred and I still remember my sense of helplessness, how I so wanted to make things right. To see mixed race crowds in South Africa rooting for their team and particularly AB today is something I never dreamed could happen. In the bad old days the non white population coralled in their enclosure would support whoever South Africa were playing. I admire many South African players from the apartheid days particularly Graeme Pollock and Barry Richards. The former’s wonderful partnership with Gary Sobers at the Oval in 1970 and the latter’s amazing opening partnership with Gordon Greenidge at Hampshire gave the lie to apartheid. I really am a hardened old cynic and I realise South Africa still has many problems but this aspect of the series has brought a glow to my cynical old heart because I never thought it could happen in my lifetime

    Liked by 6 people

    • MM Feb 14, 2016 / 11:53 pm

      Good stuff there, Alan.

      Like

    • BoredInAustria Feb 15, 2016 / 8:16 am

      Hear hear. Just drove past a kid in Malawi wearing a Springbok rugby jersey.
      Made me smile. In a good way.
      This is why sport matters and international sport is so crucial.

      Like

    • BobW Feb 15, 2016 / 11:14 am

      Yes well said Alan, I was thinking that when watching the cricket. It is great to see.
      I know South African society has it’s problems but I really do hope it can continue to move forward.

      Like

  4. SimonH Feb 15, 2016 / 8:29 am

    England have now played 20 ODIs since the WC. Here are the results compared to the first twenty ODIs after previous WC disasters:

    2015 W10 L9 NR1
    2011 W11 L7 T1 NR1
    2007 W9 L10 T1
    2003 W10 L5 NR5 (completed matches W11 L9)
    1999 W10 L7 NR3 (completed matches W11 L9)
    1995 W12 L6 T1 NR1

    Spot the one-day revolution? Spot the “one-day wonders” (DM phrase from the Hussain-Morgan interview)? Spot the “remarkable turnaround” (The Analyst on the BBC)? There’s so much ‘smoke and mirrors’ going on that the only question – are we winning? – has been successfully obfuscated. “Oceania has always been at war with Eurasia” was a party trick in comparison.

    The prevailing narrative misrepresents the past. England were never always shit at ODIs. England were shit under Peter Moores (who never won a one-day competition in any format) but “we’re better than we were 18 months ago” isn’t the point. England have quite a good record at bilateral ODIs – it’s why the template was stuck to for so long. England have even been quite good at home CTs, reaching the Final twice and probably should have won both games. What England have been shit at for two decades (and not just in cricket) is World Cups. Performance in bilaterals isn’t much of a guide to how a team will go in tournaments. India have become very good at tournaments. Remember how England outplayed India in the Tri-Series before the WC? It counted for naught – India walked into the WC SFs whereas England didn’t even make the knock-outs. India have learnt how to build a team that play a style that copes with tournament pressure and peaks at the right time. England haven’t beaten India at an ICC tournament since 1992.

    I can see why there’s more affection for this team. Yes, it’s better to lose by over-attacking than by excessive caution – but it’s better to win. “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself”. Are England so afraid of their own fear that a one-size-fits-all template of attack is the only solution?The team will learn, we’re told, but that sounds like ‘jam tomorrow’ re-packaged to me.

    Liked by 3 people

    • LordCanisLupus Feb 15, 2016 / 12:42 pm

      Great stats Simon. I think this team needs to play the way it is, but do see the other side.

      Like

  5. pktroll (@pktroll) Feb 15, 2016 / 8:46 am

    I did actually wonder about our non-tournament record over the years and remember many a so-called ‘rebirth’ falling flat on its face as a tournament got nearer.. I think the point you made about Moores is spot on. If anything England decelerated going into the World Cup last year and became more conservative as time went on and the tournament got closer. This was in spite of finally getting rid of Cook.

    One thing I will say regarding this team is that the pace bowling looks weak and I reckon that a fit and firing Finn (and possibly Wood) might improve this side. They may also wish to rid themselves of a bowler as in essence they played 6 and were possibly missing an extra batsman.

    Like

  6. BobW Feb 15, 2016 / 11:19 am

    Yes Wood and Finn would be an improvement but I would remind people that England were only a catch away from winning the series. Even a run out or two possibly. I think they will learn more from being beaten in this series than having won it.

    Like

  7. Sherwick Feb 15, 2016 / 12:02 pm

    If only Gatting hadn’t played that reverse sweep…
    It could all have been so different..
    I can see it even now.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. SimonH Feb 15, 2016 / 12:53 pm

    ODI series averages:

    http://goo.gl/jqx90j

    Those of a nervous disposition might want to avert their eyes at the bowling. One bowler (Topley) averaged under 45. SA had six – and two averaged under 25 (Rabada and Abbott).

    Like

    • metatone Feb 15, 2016 / 2:37 pm

      I can understand that people have been frustrated by the inconsistency (and stupid shot selection) of the batting order, but these figures highlight to me that the real conundrum for Bayliss to solve in ODI/T20 is the bowling.

      The batting can be good on it’s day and might be tweaked to being better than that.
      There’s no sign that we have either the personnel or the strategy to win an ODI with the ball anywhere except Trent Bridge. (Give it to Broad and have him hoop it around the corners.)

      It’s very rare for a team to win a tournament without being able to do it both ways. India’s recent successes have been largely built on their batting, but they have still had enough wily spin to turn a couple of tight matches their way.

      It’s impossible (even for India) to bat the opposition out of the game in every single match. You have to be able to do it with the ball. And we show no real signs of that at the moment.

      Liked by 1 person

    • volkerelle Feb 15, 2016 / 3:29 pm

      I would not be too harsh on the bowling figures as such. If 300 is the mean score for both sides, then economy rates of 6 would seem par and wickets will come at a higher cost. Jordan is the obvious outlier and neither his fielding nor his batting mitigate that. Overall, as many have said for a while now, Englands bowling looks a bit light. With Finn and Rashid being the possible X-factor candidates that does not seem a tournament-winning attack to me. The batting could do with a seasoned middle-order bat who has been places and could pass on knowledge to the young tyros but since they would rather cut off their noses to spite their egg-laden faces that’s not going to happen.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. amit Feb 15, 2016 / 1:29 pm

    Interesting game. And entertaining, if only because it meant ABDV batted like he usually would. Well mostly. He finally made it count in the series when the team needed him and so it was great to see the game.

    On the English squad, I generally agree with the sentiments that it seems lightweight.
    For me, Stokes and Woakes would never fit in the same squad, even if I agree with Moeen and Rashid being in the same team. They are very different (Batting allrounder Vs. Bowling), yet very similar. Chances of both doing well in any game are generally remote.

    Jordan is not yet international class. Neither is Willey. If anything, I would be tempted to replace Woakes with Broad. He is the only world class bowler in the mix.

    The batting looks good on paper – how it will do in India is anyone’s guess but that’s not where I would change much, except bringing in Taylor. I would also re-order the squad and bring Morgan at the top. He will bring his ability of playing spin to the partnership. Hales can handle pace better than spin, so both areas get covered. That keeps Roy out of squad bringing in Taylor. England might cause a few surprises in India though I still feel they are unlikely to go far.

    Like

  10. Benny Feb 15, 2016 / 3:52 pm

    I agree with you Amit. If there’s one player in the squad who can adapt to the match situation, it’s Taylor. He’s also a better fielder than most of them. While I’m happy that England have binned Flower/Miller’s stupid idea of tall drinks waiters, I don’t believe going for the opposite is clever.

    Like

    • pktroll (@pktroll) Feb 15, 2016 / 6:55 pm

      I had a chuckle at the bar that props up when you go on the Guardian side. “Thank you for reading the Guardian. Help keep our journalism fearless and independent by becoming a Supporter for just £5 a month”.

      Turncoats they are.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sherwick Feb 15, 2016 / 7:10 pm

        ROTFLMAO!

        Like

  11. man in a barrel Feb 15, 2016 / 6:05 pm

    all the stuff BTL about one dropped catch away from…… Maybe if Amla had not dropped Root in the last match, the margin of victory would have been even greater for the Proteas. But they seem to think that only one team dropped catches, forgetting some truly outstanding efforts to get rid of ABDV earlier in the series that could easily have not stuck. And if they had not stuck, what would the end result have been?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sherwick Feb 15, 2016 / 6:11 pm

      Yeah but if that had happened, and if this and happened, and if that had happened as well, we would easily have won 5-nil!
      5,-nil, 5-nil, 5-nil, 5-nillllllllllllll!

      Like

  12. man in a barrel Feb 15, 2016 / 8:53 pm

    The evidence is clear that Stokes is great on fast bouncy pitches. If he is in the T20 party, then you know that there is no hope.

    Like

    • LordCanisLupus Feb 16, 2016 / 2:00 pm

      Have a long piece on the stocks but not ready to release. Otherwise the ideas I have are lame. Blackwash also needs completing.

      Like

      • nonoxcol Feb 16, 2016 / 9:25 pm

        Naaaah. Forget that survey and any other developments in cricket over the last three weeks.

        I demand to know this blog’s position on four (or six) runs for a no-ball, and the extent to which that stance may or may not be influenced by liking New Zealand and having contempt for Australia.

        Like

      • paulewart Feb 17, 2016 / 6:46 am

        Blackwash is lovely. Takes me back……Up with this sort of thing.

        Like

    • Zephirine Feb 17, 2016 / 10:55 am

      I got stuck halfway because one question wouldn’t work – the little circles didn’t respond to being clicked on – but couldn’t find a way to let the Idle Summers know.
      It was interesting up till then, though a lot of the answers could be ‘It depends’.

      Like

      • northernlight71 Feb 17, 2016 / 12:43 pm

        I may have had the same problem – but then I realised that the page scrolled to the right, and I had extra options. Don’t know if that would have helped you?
        I feel the same about many of my answers though – quite a few of them would have been “well, yes, but only if I can trust the ICC not to bend such a requirement to their own nefarious ends….”

        Like

      • Russ Degnan Feb 17, 2016 / 9:45 pm

        Hi Zephirine, I’ve had a couple of reports of that, particularly on phones, so I have released the requirement to answer all rows, which should make it easier to select top-3/whatever. Cheers.

        Like

  13. SimonH Feb 16, 2016 / 10:05 pm

    I’m starting to really like Hales.

    Anyone so detested by the high priests of ‘proper batting’ is doing something right.

    Like

    • amit Feb 17, 2016 / 7:13 am

      I usually like Holding and his views on cricket. He is forthright, and you usually know upfront what he says and why. But, on this piece, he comes across as behind the time, I am afraid.

      What is proper cricket? Different formats need different skills. How does one get to say that one format or a specific skill is better than the other? I can totally understand the argument around flat pitches and batsmen with poor skills who “hack” and not bat, but that too, is a skill. I doubt if Boycott could “hack” it even in his prime. So, his views are conservative to say the least.

      And, I find this whole argument on Big 3 hijack of ICC a bit lame. People use this stick to blame it for all that’s wrong in cricket. It’s just not true.
      There are plenty of other reasons for cricket in a lot of countries to be where they are. Big 3 didn’t create those issues. The real impact of this hasn’t even been felt yet. It’s that recent a change. WICB is a prime example of stupidity and poor player management.

      That said, I think T20 or shorter formats of the game are the future. I like test matches but just not sure if there are enough people who are willing to support it in making it a viable professional sport that can fill stadiums and feed the professionals. I don’t necessarily see test matches dying. But it’s going to need a lot of TLC to sustain.

      Liked by 2 people

      • nonoxcol Feb 17, 2016 / 8:52 am

        In the simplest terms, the Big 3 tried to replace de facto inequality with de jure inequality. That is just disgusting, in any sport.

        Some things *have* already happened and show no sign of being reversed:

        – The ten-team world cup that’s even longer than the 14-team one. An indefensible change of format driven entirely by India, in order to benefit themselves and the other Test sides.
        – India, England and Australia hosting every single ICC event until at least 2023.
        – The World T20 – the easiest way for any associate to qualify for ICC tournaments – made quadrennial rather than biennial
        – Playing each other in long ODI series completely separate to Test tours: Ind v Eng 2011, Eng v Aus 2012, the tri-series of 14/15, Aus v Ind just finished, Eng v Aus again in 2018 and who knows what else to come.

        This is without even getting into the dodgy connections of the two men chiefly responsible for the heist.

        People like Haigh, Booth and (good on him) Newman do not use it as a stick to blame it for all that is wrong in cricket. No-one sensible argues things were perfect before, nor that reversing the changes would be a magic bullet. They just loathe an act that (at best) did nothing to address the things that were most wrong, and which instead placed the basest, most atavistic motives above any altruistic commitment to cricket as a global sport.

        When cricket needed steady governance and farsighted men of vision (cf the Woolf Report), it got a bunch of bloody looters. I for one will never forgive them.

        Liked by 3 people

      • SimonH Feb 17, 2016 / 9:56 am

        Amit, I’m closer to Nonoxcol than yourself on this one (although I wouldn’t say India are to blame for the ten-team World Cup which has been driven just as much by the ECB and CA, probably more so).

        Some cricket boards are not models of good governance e.g. PCB, WICB, SLCB. For example, the latter has a chronic corruption problem not much reported in the English media. However to focus on that as the cause of most of their problems and not the Big Three is like blaming the closure of your local coffee shop on a dubious choice of internal decor while ignoring the Starbucks that has opened down the road. I haven’t seen a bad word about the governance of cricket in NZ but they are facing the same sort of problems. It seems to be forgotten that NZ’s top players arrived in England from the IPL only three days before the Lord’s Test and, as they were only nine overs away from saving that game, it may well have cost them the series. England, on the other hand, get expensive camps in Spanish resorts before going on tour.

        Two other points about the DM article:
        1) The role of Sky is completely ignored and three of the panel work for them. Slight conflict of interests there?
        2) I like the way a crowd of 85000 at Newlands is turned into proof that there’s no appetite for Tests in SA. I’d like to know how many Tests in England in recent years have had larger crowds – outside Lord’s sometimes, I’d estimate it at none. It would be interesting to know what the TV audience was in SA for the Tests – anyone seen any viewing figures?

        Liked by 4 people

      • amit Feb 17, 2016 / 11:54 am

        Simon/NoNoxcol
        I will not dispute the potential impact or the selfish motives behind the Big 3. That’s not what I meant. While I can understand the arguments for paying India a larger share (and some of it seem reasonable), I disagree with the specific percentage. I have been quite vocal in the past about it. That arrangement was just wrong.

        It’s the constant mentioning of it, on most discussions as the BIG problem, that gets to me. This is not the only big problem in Cricket worth addressing. Corruption in boards, financial viability, governance, innovation in formats are all issues that need more debate than they get. This “Big 3” talk is often what distracts people from talking about some of these real issues.

        How many times have we seen anyone except Tony Cozier raise issues in WICB? How many times have we seen anyone discuss issues in Lanka? Or Pakistan? Or Zimbabwe?
        I can’t remember too many instances.
        And, I certainly can’t think of too many times i have seen genuine suggestions to resolve these issues.

        My point is, there are plenty of issues, probably connected but this “Big 3” is what gets most press coverage. Hence my post. We stand together on the principle though.

        Liked by 1 person

      • nonoxcol Feb 17, 2016 / 3:13 pm

        SimonH

        “Driven by India” referred to the fact that we had the commonly-used 4 x 4 group system until India (and Pakistan, of course) were prematurely knocked out of the 2007 World Cup. Every step since has loaded the dice in order to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

        I regret using “entirely”, because one of my bugbears is the way in which most English journalists (not the best Australian ones, oddly) tend to blame India for everything and paint their own board as mere pragmatists up against an irresistible force.

        Great point on Sky. The omerta on that subject is something else, and extends way beyond the usual MSM suspects.

        Like

  14. SimonH Feb 17, 2016 / 4:39 pm

    Maxie on Waitrose at TFT!

    Like

    • pktroll (@pktroll) Feb 17, 2016 / 7:11 pm

      It is a fine bit of writing indeed.I wonder who from the ECB executive gets the Spanish Archer’s as a result of this?

      Like

  15. Tuffers86 Feb 18, 2016 / 10:15 am

    Laugh of the day. FICJAM has launched a masters course on the History of Sport.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Ian Feb 18, 2016 / 12:34 pm

    Might actually apply for this and see if my work will sponsor me for it

    Like

    • Tuffers86 Feb 18, 2016 / 3:15 pm

      Would certainly love to be part of a kickstarter campaign for someone ‘Outside Cricket’ to attend and write a dissertation on what a clusterfuck of an organisation the ECB, the ICC and world cricket is. Perhaps FICJAM may learn a bit of substance to his essays.

      “When and how did sport become politicised?
      How has sport influenced attitudes towards class, race, gender and sexuality?
      Sport’s role as an agent and beneficiary of globalisation.”

      How FICJAM can put his name and keep a straight face to this when the ECB (and cricket) has failed miserably at controlling three of the main themes of this course.

      “Why was Britain so central to the development of modern sport?” — This will be the main theme. Basically a bit of bloody flag waving nonsense.

      Liked by 2 people

      • nonoxcol Feb 18, 2016 / 3:41 pm

        FICJAM v DOAG really was one of the lows of 2015. What a preposterous individual.

        You just know this is the sort of course that would have an hour-long seminar on Matthew Syed’s Randian bilge about football tickets, and about five minutes on Giles Clarke.

        Liked by 1 person

        • LordCanisLupus Feb 18, 2016 / 3:53 pm

          We should crowd fund Tim Lovejoy to go on it, as long as I get royalties for the screening rights.

          Liked by 1 person

    • LordCanisLupus Feb 18, 2016 / 4:08 pm

      This KP for South Africa story. I mean what the serious fuck is going on with our press?

      And KP’s twitter feed keeps these tossers in clover.

      Yes. We’re obsessed.

      Like

      • RufusSG Feb 18, 2016 / 5:43 pm

        Considering that the whole story was basically a second-hand claim (Darren Gough briefly mentioning it on Talksport, I believe) that KP might possibly consider it as an option, and thus little more than speculative gossip, it’s surprising that the story was leapt on and gained so much traction.

        Then again, perhaps not.

        Like

      • Zephirine Feb 18, 2016 / 11:52 pm

        the 35-year-old – who lives in the south of England – need do nothing other than remain unwanted by his adopted national team until 2018.

        If South Africa have any interest in him at that point, he could conceivably be playing for them at the age of 39 at the 2019 World Cup – which is to be held in England.

        Would be a laugh though. Only two years to go…

        Like

    • Zephirine Feb 19, 2016 / 11:54 am

      There’s a link from that Morgan interview to this:
      http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2010/may/17/england-australia-world-twenty20-final

      where there’s another link to:
      http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2010/may/16/kevin-pietersen-england-world-twenty20
      ‘Kevin Pietersen is the true force behind England’s World Twenty20 win’ writes Andy Bull.

      Six years really is a long time in cricket, isn’t it? Long enough for amnesia to set in, it seems.

      Btw I’m waiting to see Collingwood do the double and win another WT20 as coach. That’ll be good.

      Like

      • Sherwick Feb 19, 2016 / 12:08 pm

        “Pietersen, who scored 47 runs to follow his match-winning innings against Sri Lanka in the semi-finals, was quick to thank his team for the support they gave him when his form slumped in the winter. “Moments like this you have got to savour. But if it wasn’t for the help given me by all the dressing room and the coaching staff and the management in Bangladesh, I wouldn’t have been here batting like I did. Player of the series is just something that gets given to one person but the team is the most important. One person gets a lovely trophy but, if it is not for the team, I would not be sitting here.””

        And yet, just a couple of years later, stabbed in the back by these very teammates (interestingly not long after Collingwood had quit the international scene).

        Liked by 1 person

      • SimonH Feb 19, 2016 / 12:54 pm

        That Bull link is fascinating:

        “Pietersen had come down to whisper in his [Kieswetter’s] ear, sharing a tip or two with him on ironing out a kink in his technique”.

        “Flower has also encouraged him to contribute to the team much as if he were still captain. In these last weeks Pietersen has been applying not just his brawn but also his brain. In the field he is every bit as conspicuous a presence as Paul Collingwood, the two men often entering into long consultations about how the field should be set”.

        “When Mike Yardy was, for the first time in this tournament, collared by the batsmen, it was Pietersen who ran up from long-off to tell him to keep his head up”.

        Quote some of this at the ‘It’s all about him’ brigade and it’ll probably be moderated. Might still be worth it though…..

        Liked by 1 person

        • LordCanisLupus Feb 19, 2016 / 1:08 pm

          Wouldn’t read Henderson’s piece in the Cricketer then. It’s just peachy.

          Like

      • nonoxcol Feb 19, 2016 / 7:15 pm

        SimonH

        All of this is less relevant than an appearance on the Graham Norton show, which proved that “Kevin Pietersen never really fitted the mantra of no I in team”.

        Like

  17. SimonH Feb 19, 2016 / 8:28 am

    Suppose you were going to give two examples of how one-day cricket had revolutionised batting. Anything spring to mind? Like maybe….

    Not if you’re –

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03jr41t

    Just a subjective judgment or unfortunate oversight on his part of course – not at all part of the ongoing Kevin Unperson narrative. Perhaps if the interview had been conducted by a proper journalist – rather than professional pillow plumper Joe Wilson – he might have asked a question about it.

    Like

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