Now, stop me if I’ve got this wrong, but when, at the beginning of August last year, the ECB offered Kevin Pietersen the captaincy of the England side, did he not know that he was likely to have the odd difference of opinion with Peter Moores? Indeed, scrolling back on cricinfo, we find a report dated August 6 in which the pair acknowledged they had not always seen eye to eye in the past – although what that means is anyone’s guess – but had ironed out their problems at an hour-long meeting at a Northampton hotel.
Indeed, in what now can only amount to seriously overspun soundbites, Moores stated specifically that “what is really promising is that the senior arm of the team is going to get behind him (KP)” . Yet, since the story broke about Pietersen’s challenge to Moores’ authority, those in the media who claim to have the voices of informed sources breathing in their ears, have let slip that perhaps the most important senior member of the team, Andrew Flintoff, does not really get on with Pietersen.
Then again, the return to action of Steve Harmison in the dead rubber against South Africa at the Oval was reportedly specifically at Pietersen’s request, so I formed the entirely logical conclusion that at least those two hit it off. But, hang on, aren’t Harmy and Freddie supposed to be bessie mates?
OK, so it’s not impossible for me to like you and you to like me, but for me to thoroughly dislike one of your closest friends and vice versa. It’s these strange contradictions that keep human relationships interesting, isn’t it?
Perhaps. Personal conflicts are almost inevitable in any walk of life where two or more people are brought together in a common cause, but they can be – and usuallyare – managed .
Anyway, the smart money was that Pietersen’s discontent was to be enough to see off Moores. However, as I sat on the tube on my way home tonight, idly flicking through The London Lite free newspaper, another possible outcome had raised its head.
This was, surprise, surprise – and the suggestion appeared to emanate from comments made by Mark Butcher – that if Moores went down, he was likely to take KP with him.
I dismissed it as a desperate, but flawed, attempt to inject new life into a story the final chapter of which was not likely to be known for a couple of days.
I put it out of my mind and settled down to a plate of slop (a tomato and mozzarella bake if you must know) to watch the half-hour Harry Hill’s TV Burp (The Best Bits) that I had recorded at the weekend, and the increasingly unmissable new series of the canine mediation supremo Cesar Milan, aka The Dog Whisperer.
A couple of hours later I was beginning to form the opinion that either of these fine gentlemen could best sort out the split in the England camp – Hill simply by calling for the fight between two surreal rivals that usually closes the first part of his programme, Cesar by insisting on the “calm, assertive” approach that brings most dogs to heel – when I fired up my computer to fill in the last few moments before South Africa sought to become another sort of top dog, only to find cricinfo displaying an “exclusive” that an emergency ECB teleconference had raised the possibility that it was KP who was going to pay the price for his outspoken views.
As spectator sports go, this one looks set to be just as interesting as the next several hours at the SCG. I shall now doze happily on the sofa as Hashim Amla and Neil McKenzie resume the fight in Australia and fully expect to wake up to find that Andrew Strauss is the new England captain, Angus Fraser is the new coach and KP has decided to requalify for the nation of his birth, now No1 in the world.