Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting has announced that Kevin Pietersen’s claims of bullying being rife in the England team are true.
In his autobiography, Pietersen revealed how wicketkeeper-batsman Matt Prior and many of the senior bowlers would force fielders to apologise if they dropped catches and were responsible for any misfields.
“We saw them doing it,” Ponting said. “James Anderson was always the same, and Graeme Swann – the pointing of fingers and you’d hear a few expletives if there was a misfield or a dropped catch.
“The guys who were doing it were the so-called leaders. That’s where the captain has got to come in, not wait and let little things turn into big things. That’s what it sounds like has happened in this England team.”
Ponting also believes that England have become a weak team mentally, and pointed out that this was especially true when they were whitewashed 5-0 by Australia in the last Ashes series.
“They had a lot of very good players that were able to achieve a lot of success as a team,” he said. “But if you could just get inside of them and start pulling them apart, we always had a feeling they would implode pretty quickly and that’s what’s happened over the past 12 months.
“I wasn’t surprised with Jonathan Trott leaving the Ashes tour, I wasn’t surprised with Swann retiring when he did – when the ship started to go down, he jumped off pretty quickly – and now all the Pietersen stuff.”