Home > Features >

Pietersen controversy: ECB & Strauss at fault for letting things come to this state

Pietersen controversy: ECB & Strauss at fault for letting things come to this state

Kevin Pietersen’s (L) personality is well-known. Not being able to plan and manage a player of his calibre is definitely skipper Andrew Strauss and ECB’s fault © Getty Images

 

By Vidooshak

 

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) took the bold, but dim-witted step of dropping Kevin Pietersen from the Test team. Well-intentioned rules and regulations controlling player behavior are just that. “Well-intentioned”. They neither guarantee success nor do they ensure cohesive team behavior. However, many people get caught up in the rules and regulations and assume them to be the foundation for team success.

 

Here’s something that you always knew but no one told you. There is no formula for team success. Some of the most successful teams would have been called indisciplined by today’s pundits. And some of the most regimented teams have fallen by the wayside frequently. Note South Africa’s continued quest to be No 1 and win a World Cup. [On that subject, why is ESPN reporting Kirsten’s statement about SA’s desire to be No 1 as some big secret being let out? As opposed to what? South Africa is playing to be the No 3 team in the world? Or just playing to play?]

 

We suffer the bureaucracy regularly in businesses that bemoan the loss of innovation. Teams that are constrained by too many rules, regulations and codified ethics can’t function creatively enough. While this piece is not an advocacy for debilitating self-centeredness or anarchy, for sure individual expression and freedom must be cherished and preserved. There is a line that should not be crossed. But this should be left to the team to decide, not officialdom and definitely not codified by edicts to cease and desist tweets, blogs, etc.

 

All the establishment cronies – Nasser Hussain, Michael Atherton, Michael Vaughan, etc. have come out advocating Pietersen being dropped. They are also unwittingly advocating England losing the next Test match. Does anyone believe that Johnny Bairstow and whats-his-face will be able to withstand Dale Steyn, Vernon Philander and Morne Morkel? Are spectators paying to see a military parade or a cricket game with flair, flourish and pomp? Spectators want a battle out there, not a meek surrender? Spectators want players to play out of their skins to win a game of cricket. They don’t care if players are running with the right form and doing good media interviews? What will the ECB and even Andrew Strauss end up doing after England lose? Blame Pietersen for the loss for “misbehaving” and losing his place in the team?

 

Misguided officials and team captains cover up their own inadequacy of being unable to manage and motivate extremely talented individuals by scurrying to justify their failure with rules. Andrew Flintoff, Pietersen, Shane Warne, Andrew Symonds and probably every Pakistan player falls into this category of players. Perhaps, a bunch of 70s era Australians and the entire West Indies team under Clive Lloyd did too.

 

My guess is that many fans too will come out in support of ECB’s move. “No individual is bigger than the game”, they will proclaim, completely missing the point. Individuals make up the team. A captain and official’s success is being able to get the best out of the most temperamental genius in the team. There’s a reason Ian Botham prospered under Mike Brearley. Warne prospered under Mark Taylor and Steve Waugh. And there’s a reason Symonds was lost by Ricky Ponting and now Pietesen is being lost by Andrew Strauss.

 

I’m not at all advocating that every prima donna be pampered. However, the fault lies with ECB and Strauss for letting things come to this state. Pietersen’s personality is well-known. Not being able to plan and manage a player of his calibre is definitely Strauss, Flower and ECB’s fault. A little bit of humility from them early on, would have helped tremendously.

 

Thanks to their incompetence, the next Test match has been reduced to a farce. What a shame!

 

(Vidooshak is a blogger @ Opinions on Cricket . He was drawn into cricket by Golandaaz as a schoolboy. His bluster overshadows his cricketing ability. He played as a wicket-keeper in a college team but was promptly dropped. The college selection committee had slightly higher standards than Pakistani selectors. He did reasonably well in tennis ball cricket until he was benched for a final game by the team that he captained. To say some of it was due to his opinions would be an understatement of sorts. Regardless, Vidooshak finds time to opinionate relentlessly and lives a vicarious life by watching cricket teams make obvious mistakes. Good news for Vidooshak is that someone always loses a cricket game, someone always gets belted and someone always flops. Vidooshak always looks for an alternative explanation and rarely agrees with mainstream consensus. Needless to say he has no friends, only ‘tolerators’! While not throwing his weight around, Vidooshak does not run marathons or draw pictures, but reads voraciously on all topics, volunteers at local failing schools, is an avid but average golfer and runs an Indian association in mid-west America)

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (14:00 IST)   at Port Elizabeth

Sri Lanka tour of New Zealand, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (03:30 IST)   at Christchurch

India tour of Australia, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (05:00 IST)   at Melbourne

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Jan 2, 2015 (14:00 IST)   at Cape Town

Sri Lanka tour of New Zealand, 2014-15

Jan 3, 2015 (03:30 IST)   at Wellington

More

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Dec 19, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

New Zealand won by 68 runs

India tour of Australia, 2014-15

Dec 17, 2014  at Woolloongabba, Brisbane

Australia won by 4 wkts

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Dec 17, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

New Zealand won by 7 runs

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Dec 17, 2014  at Centurion

South Africa won by an innings and 220 runs

England tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Dec 16, 2014  at Colombo

Sri Lanka won by 87 runs

Photos

India vs Australia, 2nd Test at Brisbane

Videos

Ind vs Aus: Dhoni analyses the 4-wicket loss at Brisbane

Live Cricket Score Ranji Trophy 2014-15, Round 3, Day 2 — All matches

Shahid Afridi, please do not take the innocence away from cricket

India vs Australia 2014: Visitors would do well to back aggression up with performances

South Africa vs West Indies 2014-15: Is Jason Holder a captain or a stooge?

Can Eoin Morgan change England’s limited-overs fortunes?

Australia India Interviews Moments in history Ricky Ponting

Sachin Tendulkar announced as ICC World Cup 2015 brand ambassador

India vs Australia 2014-15: Joe Burns’ father did not believe selection news

India vs Australia 2014-15: Nathan Lyon backs officials despite India’s complaints

Shahid Afridi retirement: For Pathans, solace is in Pakistan cricket

Alastair Cook says he would take time to overcome disappointment following World Cup sacking

Moin Khan: Pakistan must carry momentum in ICC World Cup 2015

West Indies tour of South Africa 2014-15: One-sided encounters may suck interest out of series

India tour of Australia 2014-15: Can Australia make it 12 wins in a row at home?

Surrey throw away wickets to win against Nottinghamshire

Pakistan Under-19 captain Saud Shakeel ticks all the right boxes

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

683 Posts | 6 Fans

Mitchell Johnson's 37 wickets against England in Ashes 2013-14

प्रसिद्ध कथक नृत्यांगना सितारा देवी नहीं रही

More broadband connections to boost GDP growth in Asia Pacific: GSMA

India is becoming our largest overseas market, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun says

Bigg Boss 8: Ali Quli Mirza, Renee Dhyani, Upen Patel, Praneet Bhatt, Sonali Raut – who should be evicted this week?

Revealed: The reason why Kishore Kumar’s biopic starring Ranbir Kapoor won’t feature Katrina Kaif!

अभिनेत्री प्रियंका चोपड़ा ने स्वच्छ भारत अभियान में हिस्सा लिया

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here