January 21, 2009

England cricket

Botham springs to KP's defence

Martin Williamson





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Satirical magazine Private Eye notes the angry response of Ian Botham to the sacking of Kevin Pietersen as England captain, with the standard attacks on “buffoons in blazers” and “chinless wonders who rule Lord's”.

“They knew he wasn't going to be a yes man, no man, three-bagsful man,” Botham wrote in the Mirror. “They knew he was single-minded, they knew he wanted to do the job his way … I thought he was showing a lot of promise as captain, and even though England lost in Chennai, he deserved a lot of credit both for leading the team back to India after the Mumbai massacre.”

Private Eye then points out Botham fails to mention that he is chairman of the sports agency that manages Pietersen. “In the previous three years in which he has opined [on Pietersen] he has never seen fit to mention this conflict of interests,” the article concludes.

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Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

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