January 2009
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Open thread: Moores, Pietersen or the ECB – Who is to blame for England crisis?

January 7th, 2009 by Sam Collins in England, Test cricket and tagged , ,

Is there a cricketing country more adept at fashioning a crisis than England?

This morning that seems impossible, as confusion reigns over the futures of both Kevin Pietersen and Peter Moores.

Resignations, sackings, dressing room unrest: the full story is as yet unclear, but at the start of an Ashes year the ECB now finds itself in turmoil, all with a tour to the West Indies due to start in two weeks time.

So who do you think is to blame?

Is it Pietersen for driving a tank at a man already on the edge of a cliff, Moores for his mediocre record as coach or the ECB for allowing this mess to drag on for the best part of a week?

And what of the future for Pietersen? Is his position now untenable, and would he be justified in chasing the gold of the IPL?

Have your say below…

Posted in England, Test cricket | 11 Comments »

11 Responses to “Open thread: Moores, Pietersen or the ECB – Who is to blame for England crisis?”

  1.   The Village Cricketer says:

    This thing is absolutely ridiculous. Moores had a tough job following Fletcher, and results have been poor. That said, whatever the rights and wrongs of Moorers, the fact that the principal players were arguing this whole sorry affair in the press is lamentable.

  2.   Shutts66 says:

    A sad day for Enlgish cricket. Only the people at the centre of this saga know what has really gone on. It must be serious as I don’t recall Pietersen challenging authority at any other time during his career. He’s had a couple of quibles in South Africa over national selection policies; oh, and of course a minor tiff with Nottinghamshire that led to a move to Hampshire. But apart from that I can’t think of anything that springs to mind.
    Did Pietersen stand alone in his challenge? Or was he representing the feelings of the squad as a whole? I only hope that the ECB find out sufficient details. If they do not, they run the risk of this happening again.
    Run forward 2 years. New coach, new captain, moderate success (Ashes - won 1, lost 1). Captain Straus resigns as runs have not flowed. England turn to their middle order to succeed him. So by 2011, that’s Pietersen or Bell. But Pietersen doesn’t like the coach appointed in 2009.
    And so on it goes.
    Please ECB, get to the bottom of this issue. If Pietersen was acting alone, the coaches position is not untenable. Pietersen’s is. And whilst his exclusion would not improve the teams run scoring ability, it may actually strengthen the team.

  3.   Dave says:

    Regardless of who is right and who is wrong, Pietersen and Moores are adults and should settle their differences as adults.

    As such, I feel the only logical option is water pistols at ten paces.

  4.   Paddy Briggs says:

    After the debacle of the Ashes tour 2007/7 the ECB appointed Ken Schofield to do a study of the failings of England cricket. One of the (few) headline grabbing recommendations from Schofield was that a Managing Director to oversee the running of the national team be appointed. See:


    That Managing Director is Hugh Morris and whilst most of the current attention is on the failure of Pietersen and Moores to find an accommodation between themselves there is little attention on Morris’ role. Indeed he seems to have disappeared since the team came back from India.

    Questions for Mr Morris:

    (1) Are you really responsible for overseeing the England team?
    (2) If yes want have you been doing over the past week?
    (3) Given the shambles all around you will you now resign?

  5.   Daniel Brigham says:

    He’s giving a presser later so we may well find out …

  6.   Paddy Briggs says:

    Nostradamas Award to ECB “Twelth Man” blogger Justin Goulding who said in August:

    “The legend of King Midas is well known in Greek mythology, but Kevin Pietersen’s early captaincy forays suggest he is on the way to making a similar entry into the annals of English cricket.

    His reign as England captain is barely three weeks old and encompasses just three matches, but there is a mounting body of evidence to support the theory that Pietersen, like Midas, possesses the golden touch.”

    So that’s alright then…

  7.   Specialist Observer says:

    Imagine that! The Captain walks before given out.

    Never, ever a dull moment in this world.

  8.   Andrew Hughes says:

    Typical ECB. Can’t even organise an exciting double-sacking. Where were the angry shouted questions from a baying mob of hacks? Where were the scuffles with reporters? The tears? The threats of legal action? No, all we get is an exchange of press releases and then timid little Hugh Morris reading out a prepared story as long as the assembled media types promised not to ask him any questions.

    “Once upon a time,” he began, in a whispery little voice, “there were two nice men called Kevin and Peter. Then we sacked them both even though neither of them had done anything wrong. And they both lived happily ever after. The end.” And off he skipped to Neverland.

    Mind you, Sky News wasn’t much better. Between 5:40pm and 5:55pm we saw the same footage of KP at Durban airport approximately fourteen times. I’ve memorised it now. I can picture him, wearing a light burgundy top with a hint of charcoal. He walks past a Subway (closed) and a man with a shiny forehead who turns to watch him go. The camera lingers on the back of KP’s head for a while. A little later on, we see him handing a ticket to an official. Fourteen times. And Sky had the nerve to call this, ‘Exclusive footage of the England captain.’

    Thank God then for Bob Willis. Called in to fill the gap between when Sky started to tell us about the 6 o’clock statement and when it actually arrived, old Bob grumbled, whinged and moaned delightfully for a few minutes, managing to explain that KP had been stupid and that the England players didn’t like him.

    Then it was Gower’s turn.

    “Is English cricket in a mess, asked the excitable studio presenter. Not really, I was thinking.

    “Yes it is,” opined David and proceeded to lull us to sleep with a five minute exposition, the finer points of which I may only be able to recall under hypnosis.

    Of course it’s nothing of the sort. Socrates would have summed it up thus:

    “Wouldn’t you say that yesterday we had a captain who wasn’t quite up to the job?”
    “Yes I would.”
    “And would you also say that we had a coach who wasn’t that great?”
    “Well, yes, that’s true.”
    “And would you further say that the captain and the coach didn’t work well together?”
    “I suppose that is true, yes.”
    “And that the team was divided, not all of them supporting the captain?”
    “I would have to say yes.”
    “And would say that these were bad or good things?”
    “Bad things, certainly.”
    “And after today’s mess, do these things still exist?”
    “Well, no.”
    “So if it is a mess, isn’t it a peculiarly good kind of mess, in which all the problems which existed yesterday have now been resolved?”
    “Why, yes it is.”
    “So can it really be considered to be a mess?”
    “When you put it like that, no, I suppose it isn’t.”

    So there you have it. Socrates would have made mincemeat of David Gower. But probably not Andrew Strauss. Which is reason number 94 in the long list of reasons why he should already be captain and we should not be having this conversation.

  9.   Shutts66 says:

    Mr Hughes

    Wise words - and the most eloquently put arguement I have seen for some time. Even more so when I didn’t realise Brazil’s 40 fags a day former captain had any knowledge of cricket.
    Have you applied for a position at the ECB? Tehre must be a position avaialbe, such as Not Quite In charge of Selection or Contracts or Sorting Out the Team, but Drinks Gin and has a 3 Striped Jazzy Tie.
    Is it me or has Hugh Morris visibly aged 10 years this week? Good job they put captions on the telly (hah, I nearly wrote captains there) as I didn’t recognise him yesterday. I thought, ‘Who’s this, wearing a tie that doesn’t agree with my telly?’.
    Good things to come out of this: -
    1. A new captain who is very English (well, at least he has lived here longer than Pietersen)
    2. No coach, so at least we should now find out whether the players can think for themselves.
    3. Strauss making a gaff in his first conference. ‘I don’t think anyone has come out of this very well’, conveniently forgetting that he has! Unless, of course, he really didn’t want the job.
    4. We found out where the ECB hierachy were all holidaying this winter. Interestingly, the 18 counties that employ them were not on the list.
    5. It provided Dominic Cork with some winter employment. Although I didn’t understand a word he said.

    I can’t wait for the next installment.

  10.   Andrew Hughes says:

    Very good! Dominic Cork was the first pundit I saw after the news broke. I too was baffled, then alarmed that his conclusion was that Flintoff had to be given the captaincy.

  11.   Paddy Briggs says:

    So now it is clear and although it’s a bit smart arse to say so my pointing the finger firmly at the ECB in general and Hugh Morris in particular is vindicated.

    If the fish is rotten cut off the head. That’s Clarke and Collier gone then. And I’m sorry Hugh nice bloke though you are you really have in all honour to walk the plank.

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