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England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) managing director Paul Downton has once again reiterated that there is no place for Kevin Pietersen in the national team.
Pietersen had his central contract terminated following England’s disastrous tour of Australia in December.
While the ECB decided to give Peter Moores a second chance at being England’s head coach, they seemed to ignore Pietersen’s tweet about giving him a second chance as well.
“Everyone deserves a second chance,” Pietersen had said via his Twitter account.
Moores responded by saying: “Good tweet”.
Downton added that Pietersen wasn’t ousted due to a certain incident, but rather due to a number of controversies over a period of time.
“Go back to Australia and watch what happened,” Downton said. “I watch quite a lot of cricket. What you saw was a senior England player who had become disconnected from the team.
“I watched every ball of that Sydney Test and I’ve never seen anyone so disengaged from what was going on. What you need from a senior player is backing, support, everyone working together and we’d just got to a stage where that was no longer the case.
“If you are looking for a smoking gun there are no specific issues. This is ten years of Kevin scoring very well for England but getting to a point where the balance shifted. During those ten years we had a strong side, strong leadership in terms of established captains and coaches, and that side could accommodate Kevin. That balance has shifted, we have to invest in new players and a new side won’t accommodate Kevin. It’s as simple as that. It’s about the balance of what is best for English cricket.
“The sooner we understand that Kevin has had his time, the better. We are moving on without him. We sat down, talked through it over a number of hours and he was the one, in the end, who wanted to terminate his contract and we came to an agreement to do that. He is free to play wherever he wants around the world, but the sooner that we can focus on young players coming through the more everyone will enjoy it.
“I arrived in Sydney on December 31, and it was clear from meeting Andy Flower that there were two major issues. He was uncertain about his future and whether he wanted to stay and what we were going to do about Kevin. The issue at the stage was that you had a senior England player who had got disconnected from the team.
“We had to build not for the next three months, but the next two, three, five years and for the side to grow – remember we hadn’t replaced Strauss in 18 months, Swann had retired, Trott sadly had gone home and is still recovering now – we had to invest in new players and we had to build a new team with some core values. It was decided that wouldn’t happen with Kevin in the side. We decided not to select him. I don’t see any intention of going back.”
Pietersen and Moores also had their own controversy back in 2009 when Moores was sacked as head coach. But, the 51-year-old added that he doesn’t have any hard feelings towards the South African-born batsman.
“Impossible to say,” Moores said when asked if it would be easier to coach the national team without Pietersen. “I’ve not worked with this team yet. Every team is different in some ways.
“I never fell out with Kevin, Kevin fell out with me. I don’t place any blame. I moved on quickly. A strength of mine is I look forward, not back.”