England news June 13, 2012

Swann defends Pietersen one-day retirement

ESPNcricinfo staff

England's offspinner Graeme Swann has voiced sympathy for Kevin Pietersen's decision to retire from one-day internationals to escape a relentless international schedule.

"There comes a time when you get towards the end of your career, into your thirties, when something's got to give," Swann has told The Cricket Paper. "You can flog yourself to death and fall to pieces or you can start to be quite wise and make a pragmatic decision.

"Whatever Kevin's made his decision for, whether it be financial matters or the family or whatever, I can understand where he's coming from because there's certainly times I look at a schedule and just think: 'How can I do this? My body's killing me. I haven't seen my kids, my wife is ready to get up and walk out because I'm never here.' We're human beings at the end of the day.

"I've got a kid being born at the end of the summer and I'm going to see her for a week in the first six months of her life. I look at that and think how am I going to do it? How can I possibly get through?

"If it was a couple of years down the line there'd be no two ways about it, I'd be saying, right, something's got to give and something has to go."

Swann insisted that Pietersen, like all players, had an absolute right to make his own decision about when to retire, in whole or part, from the England side.

"I can understand where Kev's coming from and I can understand where the ECB are coming from at the same time: 'We pay you well, we expect you play, it is a short career.' But people have to face facts that you are in control of your own destiny, so you decide: 'I've had enough, I'm going to retire from whatever form of the game,' then that's it."

Swann has repeatedly expressed disenchantment with the amount of 50-over cricket played by England, openly stating a preference for Tests and Twenty20, but he said he did not expect to follow a similar course.

"It's hard to say, but I think it would be all or nothing for me, to be honest," he said. "If you pick and choose which one to ease off then I think for me it'd cause a lessening of my affections in the other forms."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • John on June 16, 2012, 8:00 GMT

    @DannoTheManno - Aww another SA fan crying over their teams inability to win a series.If I'm wrong in anything I say please correct me or be more specific.Yes we have not beaten SA for 7 years but by the same token SA haven't won a home series vs Eng which started this millenium and yes you could possibly go back further for when Eng last beat SA at home. Truth is that from the last 6 series Eng and SA are dead level in series , even to a test. I'm not even saying that Eng are better than SA or will beat SA. Truth is there's prob not much to chose between Eng/SA and Aus. My point is that we're getting an increasing number of SA fans on our threads booing that they deserve to be number 1 , that they're the far superior side blah blah blah. All I have done is given examples of where SA themselves have fallen short. BTW I was one of the regulars during our whitewash with Pak.Please also remember I'm not the 1 giving it the big one about what will happen in the series . Please publish

  • Daniel on June 15, 2012, 10:30 GMT

    @JG2704 - yeah well done on that last "drawn" series. You fully deserved that result. The last time you beat SA in a series was in 2005.. thats 7 - count them - 7 years ago... i think you know that what you are saying is indeed wrong.. As i have already said.. lets watch the series.. i have a feeling you will be commenting a lot less after another of your captains is forced into retirement by the great Captain Smith.

  • John on June 15, 2012, 8:44 GMT

    @IndiaNumeroUno on (June 14 2012, 17:36 PM GMT) Swann has done exceptionally well for England over the years - as the rankings show - even if he had a horrid ODI tour in India. To be honest I found that alot of the IPL teams go for name players above form players - even some who were picked for squads and I feel a batsman will usually pick up more interest than a bowler. Swann wasn't picked and neither was Mendis - both of who were top 5 T20 world ranked bowlers and Mendis's base price was very low indeed. Alf Thomas did well in his first few games and then wasn't selected for a while and Van Der Merwe got one game in which he did very well in and he was also cast aside and some of the Indian players went for silly money in the auction.It almost became like Ebay where decent items/players weren't selling at the start/base price but lesser items/players went for crazy bucks

  • VENKATACHALAM on June 15, 2012, 6:08 GMT

    ECB, better start resting Swanny from meaningless one-day series. Otherwise, by the look of things they day isn't far off when England are going to lose their only world class spinner in ages, from all forms of the game for good.

  • VaRUN on June 14, 2012, 23:37 GMT

    @JG2704 - YES! I totally agree with you that our players look disinterested at the moment. 2012 didn't go too well for us Indians.

  • Charles on June 14, 2012, 22:45 GMT

    @IndiaNumeroUno - I'm not sure in what universe he's not a "proper spinner"; he bowls with a straight arm and turns the ball, which is more than can be said for an awful lot of spin bowlers today. Incidentally, he's ranked third in the world in test matches behind only Saeed Ajmal and Rangana Herath and ahead of any Indian bowler, spinner or otherwise. Pretty good for someone who's "not actually a proper spinner", right?

  • John on June 14, 2012, 18:48 GMT

    @jimmy2s on (June 14 2012, 11:36 AM GMT) PS - and I don't expect you to answer this- but how do you actually work out that SA should be sitting on top of the tree right now?

  • stuart on June 14, 2012, 17:48 GMT

    Always good to have a considered response from Randy Oz. Talking off players on the slide what about your batting line up?

  • Indian on June 14, 2012, 17:36 GMT

    problem is, Swann is not actually a proper spinner, so no chance of being offered anything lucrative in the IPL.

  • John on June 14, 2012, 17:08 GMT

    @the_blue_android on (June 14 2012, 16:44 PM GMT) So based on 2012 so far , I guess that explains why Indian players are looking disinterested in all 3 formats

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