Posted: Friday 23rd May 2014 at 7:26 am

Nobody wanted Kevin Pietersen, says ECB director Paul Downton


Pietersen was controversially axed from the England set-up in April after the nation’s disastrous tour of Australia, which saw Alastair Cook’s men relinquish the Ashes.

Fans and pundits have continually questioned the decision to drop Pietersen but Downton has gone into great detail to explain the reasoning behind the right-handed batsman’s departure from the international arena.

Speaking to BBC , Downton claimed the 33-year-old’s disinterested persona Down Under left the ECB with little option but to part ways after 104 Tests and 136 one-day international appearances.

“One of the huge issues after Australia was, ‘what are we going to do about Kevin?” said Downton.

“I was quite frustrated watching him as a fan, and there was a feeling he wasn’t engaged as he should be as a senior player.

“I then watched every ball of the Sydney Test live, and I’ve never seen anyone as disinterested or distracted as Kevin. It looked very strange.

“I talked to every person on the management team and quite a few senior players, and I couldn’t find one supporter who wanted Kevin to stay in the side.

“We spent the next three weeks working out what to do in the best interests of English cricket.”

Downton added: “We made the decision on Kevin to move on as we wanted to invest in Cook and other young players, rebuild the side.

“Kevin was starting to play a bit like a luxury player. There was a ‘this-is-the-way-I-play’ type of attitude. He had not been fit an awful lot and he wasn’t producing the results he once had.

“We felt we couldn’t trust him to be a senior player to build a side around. We’re backing Alastair Cook and others. Sooner people understand we have cut our ties with Kevin Pietersen and moved on and investing in younger players coming in, rebuild side, the better.

“The accusations were that Kevin had too many agendas and wasn’t 100 per cent focused on playing for England.”

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