Monday, 9 August 2010

KP: Blood on the carpet

Tales of hubris and arrogance involving KP aren't particularly rare, and yesterday provided another one. Yet all of it this time is emanating from Hampshire, who don't want to pick him for T20 finals day on saturday because it might 'disrupt the line up'.

Notts have no such worries about using Broad and Swann, and as a result more than a third of their side will have the experience of playing in a World Cup final.

Hampshire are ignoring the opportunity of reuniting two of England's top three, and are turning their back on the man of the tournament in the West Indies. But there are surely only two questions they need to ask: is Pietersen motivated? Will he improve the team? The answer to both is surely yes. He needs an innings and the platform is one he responds to.

The settled side argument put forward by Hampshire is a smokescreen. It wasn't settled enough to stop them paying big money for Abdul Razzaq, and Lumb has only just come back from being dropped. In truth, they don't want to play Pietersen because he's leaving, and was brusque in the way he announced it. Why not just say so, in that case?

There are no cricketing reasons for him not to play, and Hampshire are a professional team, not a club side. Sentiment plays no part in pro cricket - as Alistair Cook is likely to find out when the Essex team sheet goes up...

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