NICK SUMPTON’S COLUMN - Pietersen dropped as ECB stand firm

Kevin Pietersen
Kevin Pietersen
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The Olympics has brought to the fore what hard work, passion for sport, determination and a sense of really doing something, for the good of your country, is all about.

As the Olympics came towards an end, the Kevin Pietersen saga also seems to have come a dramatic climax.

I’d forgive you for getting wrapped up in the Olympics and not knowing or caring what is going on with Kevin Pietersen. I must say I have been one of those, but here is a quick run through of what has happened since the Headingley Test Match where Pietersen made a swashbuckling 149.

Pietersen refused to confirm or deny that the final Lord’s Test would be his last Test, as speculation grew about Pietersen turning down a central contract in favour of playing a full season in the IPL.

There is a parody Twitter account pretending to be KP, which has been muted as being controlled from within the England dressing room, which has obviously been denied.

He then sensationally took to YouTube to make himself available for all forms of cricket for England, trying to dampen the panic at the ECB.

This is all in the midst of accusations of sending derogatory text messages to South African players about skipper Andrew Strauss and head coach Andy Flower, which Pietersen refuses to deny. Make of that what you will.

That has culminated in Pietersen being dropped from the Test Match squad which now includes Jonny Bairstow alongside James Taylor, who impressed at Headingley.

Pietersen is the complete contrast to what we have just witnessed with the British Olympians.

It’s all about him, it’s all about money. Does he have the sense of doing something for his country? Oh hang on, we often forget he grew up in South African.

KP has forced himself out of every dressing room he has been in, he did it at Nottinghamshire, Hampshire and couldn’t work with Peter Moores when he got the chance to captain the England side.

What’s to say he doesn’t see England as just another team, after all he has no ties to England? He wasn’t raised here in England was he?

Pietersen doesn’t care about England, he doesn’t play for the supporters or his team mates. That’s evident with the rift caused by Pietersen, reading between the lines of what team mates say, he’s wasn’t a popular member of the dressing room.

That all aside, the ECB must be congratulated on leaving Pietersen out of the England side.

It would have been the easy option to leave him in the squad for a must win game but they have taken to better option for England and the future of English cricket.

England have players which are all around a similar age, and we could end up the way Australia did where all the players make their way for the retirement door around the same time.

Gradually adjusting the team will ensure that England can stay at the top of the game for years to come, and now is a great time to blood Bairstow and Taylor through to the full Test Match team.

After last week’s triple win, it was repeated this weekend as all three Scarborough teams recorded victories.

Andrew Simpson blasted 133 not out, as we posted 296-4 with other runs from Samrat Sharma making 52, Mark Tennant 42 and Ash Lyth smashed 31 from just 17 balls.

That proved to be far too many for Castleford who were skittled for 178. Ant Hunter picked up three wickets, Jack Holt two, and Tom Bruce also took two wickets to ensure another win for Simpson’s men.

They followed that up with a win in the semi-final of the cup against Barnsley on Sunday by just one run.

Simpson was once again in the runs, making 84, while Mark Tennant made 78 as we culminated 275. Barnsley fell one short as Theo Smith’s five-for and three wickets for Danny Evans clinched the place in the final for us once again.

Theo has been in and out of the 1st XI over he last couple of years and was yet to make a major impression on the first team, hopefully he can continue on from here and really cement a place in the 1st XI.

The 2nd XI’s resurgence continues as they had the better of a draw at Welton and Brough.

We needed just two more wickets to take all 30 points but another good performance with the points moving us further from the two relegation spots.

Joe Padmore made 49, and others contributed throughout.

The stand-out performers of them contributions was 35 from Josh Mainprize, and a quick-fire 25 from Sam Carver as the innings drew to a close, as we made 196-9.

In reply, Matty Kay was once again in the wickets, taking 6-40 which swung the game away from Welton when they looked well set to win the game at 126-3.

The 3rd XI are almost there with their promotion charge, as they eased past Cloughton 2nds. Jordan Welford claimed 7-14 to dismiss Cloughton for 119.

We then chased the score thanks to more runs from Sam Hills, who made 46 and Matty Southwell added a valuable 42.

Sam is really pushing for his place back in the 2nd XI, he has just been unfortunate that others have started to get runs in the other Scarborough teams which has had a knock on affect on Sam.

It’s been strange that all of a sudden the batting has clicked at Scarborough and we’ve started posting big scores.

This week we will be hoping to put on more big scores as the 1st XI travel to Harrogate on Saturday before visiting Barnsley on Sunday.

The 2nd XI host Duncombe Park who are going well in the 3rd Division, while the 3rd XI play Duncombe Park 2nds in Helmsley.