Panesar traces English crisis to India series

January 9th, 2009 - 9:16 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Jan 9 (IANS) Monty Panesar Friday said the England cricket team was a dispirited lot during their Test series defeat in India.Panesar said he sensed “something was wrong” during the team’s 0-5 loss in the ODIS but it was not until he joined the squad for the first time since last summer, for a two-match Test series before Christmas, that he knew for sure the atmosphere had changed.

“When we won the Test against South Africa at The Oval, which was Kevin Pietersen’s debut as captain, everything was very upbeat and positive,” Panesar was quoted as saying in The Guardian.

“But when I came back into the Test team out in India, something had changed. It felt like something was missing.

“There just wasn’t the same buzz or vibe around. It felt flat compared to the atmosphere during that Oval match. We just didn’t feel as together or connected in India.”

Pietersen’s subsequent resignation has been accompanied by revelations about the disintegration of his relationship with the coach, Peter Moores, who has been sacked.

It has also been reported that Pietersen did not have the support he anticipated from his team-mates when the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) sounded them out, as his stand-off with Moores reached flash point.

Panesar, however, refuses that there are factions in the England dressing room. “I’ve heard people saying there are cliques in this England squad, but that is not true. Of course there are various groups, but it would be wrong to call them factions or cliques.”

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