Boycott sides with Pietersen, slams ECB and Moores

An irate Geoffrey Boycott on Thursday lashed out at the England and Wales Cricket Board, saying Peter Moores exit was "an accident waiting to happen".

updated: January 08, 2009 16:37 IST
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An irate Geoffrey Boycott on Thursday lashed out at the England and Wales Cricket Board, saying Peter Moores exit was "an accident waiting to happen" and the mess which ECB finds itself in, is its own making.

Boycott was furious after, he felt, Kevin Pietersen was made to quit from the captain's job.

"The ECB said Pietersen resigned. He went before he was pushed, that was quite obvious. Coming off his safari he heard they were sacking him. Why else would he make his statement just before getting on a plane?" Boycott asked.

The cricketer-turned-commentator, in his column for 'The Daily Telegraph', said ECB knew all along about Pietersen's maverick streak and wondered why they were making a fuss about it.

"What did the England and Wales Cricket Board expect when they appointed him? They knew then he was outrageous and different, a one-off and a showman. But the most important thing is he's a winner," Boycott said.

According to him, Pietersen probably stepped on a few toes and became a target.

"Maybe KP told the board some home truths, and also told some players to buck up their ideas if they wanted to win the Ashes. Some people just can't take the truth. Geniuses are often misunderstood," he said.

Not much impressed by Moores, Boycott said, "As for Peter Moores, his departure doesn't bother me. For a long time now I have felt this was an accident waiting to happen.

"I've never been impressed with his training methods: ice baths after play, leaping into the swimming pool and playing soccer or rugby at the end of the day. It's all sugar and spice, it looks good, but there's no substance."

Instead of Moores, former India coach John Wright should have been roped in for the job, said Boycott.

"When Moores was appointed, my choice would have been John Wright. A quiet lad, but with an iron fist inside a velvet glove. As coach of India he had a strong captain in Sourav Ganguly, but players and public adored him. He played for New Zealand, but he has no ego," Boycott said.

England's 2005 Ashes-winning coach Duncan Fletcher also felt ECB has created problems for itself by its shoddy handling of the issue.

"What a mess," Fletcher said.

"How sad for English cricket that a year containing a home Ashes series has begun in such chaos. The selectors really should have stepped in before things turned ugly. Instead, England are in real trouble with the arrival of the Australians only a few months away. It all seems such a shame," Fletcher was quoted as saying by "The Times".

Fletcher supported passing on the captaincy reigns to Andrew Strauss but felt the player would have to earn teammates' respect in order to deliver the goods.

"Andrew Strauss was the only viable option. But he will need the support of all the other players, and he will need to be rated by the other players too - which is crucial for any leader.

"There are egos in that dressing room who could cause more problems for the new captain. Not least of the difficulties will be how to handle KP when he returns to the rank and file," he said.