Kevin Pietersen told to quit by Andy Flower

England coach Andy Flower has told press that he didn’t issue out of form batsman Kevin Pietersen an ultimatum that would see one of them leaving the England set up. “Neither I nor the wider ECB leadership group have made any decisions as to the future involvement of any individuals in the playing group,” he said in response to the unconfirmed allegations that are creating a lot of waves among England supporters.

“The reports I have issued an ultimatum of some description to the ECB are totally inaccurate,” Flower said. In response, Pietersen tweeted that he was “shocked and saddened” by the rumours and added “I wish to repeat my strong desire to continue playing for my country and to help us regain the Ashes in 2015.”

The current Ashes tour has been a difficult one for everyone associated with England but the management more than the players have borne the brunt of the criticism. Players like Graeme Swann and Jonathan Trott walking away from England when the side were at their lowest ebb must have hurt the England coach and both decisions ultimately damaged the team’s resolve to retain the Ashes which they won for a third time during the summer 2013 tour at home.

Having been beating in all five tests down-under, England now find themselves fourth in the ICC’s World Test rankings. Individually, no one had a good tour. Pietersen was England’s top batsman with a total of 294 runs scored in ten innings but he top scored with 71 in the 1st innings of the Melbourne test and recorded 3 single digit scores to establish a 29.40 series average.

The team now need to rebuild but they don’t need to fight among themselves. Ultimatums like the one suggested in the press won’t help English cricket to recover in the long or short term.

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