Harmison denies senior players backstabbed PietersenJanuary 11th, 2009 - 5:11 pm ICT by IANS
London, Jan 11 (IANS) England fast bowler Steve Harmison refuted allegations that he and other senior players had any role to play in the resignation of Kevin Pietersen from captaincy.Harmison also contradicted English cricket manager Hugh Morris claims that players’ opinion was sought on the controversial issue that rocked English cricket.
Reports suggested that the dressing room was divided in two camps over the subject and Harmison, Andrew Flintoff, and Andrew Strauss did not support Pietersen when it came to choose between the captain and coach Peter Moores.
“Andrew Flintoff, Andrew Strauss, myself and other senior England players today stand accused of stabbing our former captain, Kevin Pietersen, in the back over the split with our former coach, Peter Moores, which has ended up costing two good men their jobs. The first thing I need to do is refute that accusation completely. It simply isn’t true,” Harmison wrote in his column in Daily Mail.
“I can say without a moment’s hesitation that both Fred (Flintoff) and I supported Kevin as our captain and our leader, Strauss has already made his backing for Kevin quite clear and any suggestion that we turned against him when Hugh Morris, the managing director of England cricket, rang us for our views over the crisis is rubbish.”
Harmison said the reports that they told Morris of their support to Peter Moores ahead of Pietersen is “nonsense”.
“I had my moment with Kevin at the end of the Indian tour when he left me out of the side for the second Test in Mohali. I was upset. I told him so at his face but we ended a 40-minute meeting on excellent terms, determined to go forward.”
“To my mind, the only people who have stabbed Kevin in the back are those who chose to leak the information that he had promised to quit the captaincy for the tour to West Indies if Peter remained as coach.”
Harmison said as per his understanding of the issue, Pietersen decided not to carry on as captain after he felt all attempts to resolve a growing problem had failed.
“And he felt the only course of action left open to him was to confront it head on, even if it cost him his job. To that end, he communicated his feelings via a private and confidential email to his bosses at Lord’s.”
“We may never discover how that information then reached the public domain, but once that train was running, there was no way of stopping it.”