I grew in a picturesque green village in Essex before leaving for University aged 19. Bottom of my road turn left, underneath the railway bridge and there stood the village cricket club in a green plush field.
Few times I watched club matches in the summer or, at least tried to understand it. Instead, I fell in love with the beautiful game of football so, it is with interest now that I follow the Kevin Pietersen story.
On Monday 4 February, the England Wales Cricket Board (ECB) released a statement on their website. It stated that Pietersen “.. .was not included in the England squads for forthcoming tour of the Caribbean tour later this month nor the ICC World Twenty20 to be held in Bangladesh in March…”
A colleague of mine described the announcement as “..if Wayne Rooney had been dropped from the England football team..”. Hearing that statement, made me understand the outpouring of frustration and disappointment of the ECB decision on social media and other channels.
Cricket isn’t my game but I’m passionate about reputation. I wonder if this announcement damaged the ECB’s credibility.
Pietersen features in the sports newspaper back pages regularly and not necessarily for the right reasons. However, my understanding is that he is possibly one of England & Wales greats.
Couldn’t the ECB be more transparent in their decision to retire one of England & Wales warriors? Since the story broke on Monday 4th, the issue rumbles on with supporters calling for the ECB to be more open, despite the Pietersen quote in the release.
This segues into my next point in this saga. Why was Pietersen quoted in the release? Does that mean he accepted the ECB’s decision? This leads me to believe that there is more to this story that supporters understand. One we may never have the answers to.
It appears that cricket in this country has moved from the gentlemen’s game I remember to in-fighting, divisiveness, political decisions and finger pointing. More damage to its reputation, which will take time to rebuild.