Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Peitersen plan backfires

No doubt the biggest story in sport over the last few days has been the rift between Peter Moores and his captain Kevin Pietersen, which today it seems has resulted in both of them leaving their jobs. Whether they resigned or were pushed is a moot point. What is increasingly evident is that Pietersen’s biggest strength, his ego, has come back to haunt him.
He thought that he could force Moores out of the system and decided to flex his muscles with the ECB in the hope that he could get the result he wanted, and have a coach of his choice appointed. However it has undoubtedly backfired on the abrasive South African as he faces losing the captaincy and the possibility that he may abandon the England team for the riches of the IPL.
So what now for English cricket? In my mind they need to start looking at the best ways to tackle the short term goals. What England face this year are seven test matches against the West Indies, the Twenty20 World Cup, then of course followed by the Ashes series against Australia.
So who should be the new captain and coach? With the cricket in the West Indies due to start in the next couple of weeks, three things need to happen to make sure England enjoy a successful 2008. Andrew Strauss should be given the captaincy in all forms of the game and restored to the one day squad. He has craved the captaincy since his elevation to the international game and has done reasonably well when he has filled in on a temporary basis during the injury problems of Michael Vaughan. Ashley Giles should be given the coaching job with a contract until the end of the Ashes series, and will no doubt steady the ship with his calm measured approach to the game, and will mean that it gives the ECB a chance to take their time and appoint a top class coach with Graham Ford and Tom Moody amongst the favourites for the job.
One more thing that I think England should consider is the position of Marcus Trescothick, who recently announced his retirement from all forms of international cricket due to his stress related illness. However if Bell or Collingwood fail in the West Indies, the England selectors should do everything in their power to persuade him to play for England throughout the course of the summer. If you want to win matches, you need your best players and Trescothick would be a fantastic asset as English cricket attempts to drag itself out of this self inflicted mire.