Feedback - Boycott calls for Fletcher to go October 24, 2006

A miracle has happened

ESPNcricinfo staff

Geoff Boycott has called on Duncan Fletcher to be sacked as England coach less than a month before the start of the Ashes and his words have prompted different reactions from you. Here's what you had to say:



Duncan Fletcher: the debate has started © Getty Images
How unusual ...Sir Geoffrey courting controversy. No sane man would seiously suggest a change of coach at this stage of an Ashes campaign. I greatly admired Boycott as a player and enjoy him as a commentator, but this latest pronouncement has more to do with his media profile than with Duncan Fletcher's tenure as England cricket coach. Yes, all coaches have a 'shelf life', but after the World Cup is the obvious time for that to happen. C'mon Geoffrey, my old mum could make more logical statements than you sometimes!
Lee Partis UK

I think a miracle has happened. Boycott has actually said something worth listening to and for the first time I actually agree with him. Fletcher must go. This current England team prioritise Test cricket so much that we are being laughed at for our shocking performances in the one-day game. Our Ashes win was down to good captaincy and a bit of luck - not Fletcher's mastermind.
Jack Beavis UK

Boycott's claim that every coach has a shelf-life does seem possible. However, he hasn't specifically stated why he thinks Fletcher has reached the end of his. When a coach reaches the end of his shelf-life, you would expect there to be signs -dissention in the team and the like. None of these are evident. One could point to the dismal performance in ODIs, but hasn't it been like this for some time now? At the end of the day, one could only form a proper opinion after canvassing the views of people in the dressing room. So, Boycott makes a statement but does not give any supporting argument.
Nitin Williams India

Boycott's call for Fletcher to go reminds me of when President Lincoln was being urged to sack General Grant. "Who would you replace him with?" asked Lincoln. "Anybody" was the reply. "Anybody might do for you, but I must have Somebody", riposted Lincoln. Fletcher's Test record speaks for itself. Is there a better Test team coach in world cricket? Do we want to throw the Test baby out with the ODI bathwater?
Martin Hewitt, UK

Geoff Boycott is spot on with his analysis of the situation. Every job must be analysed based on performance, and Fletcher has failed to deliver on his responsibilities as coach. He is also correct to opine that familarity will breed complacency and that has shown in the lack of response to his instruction. The coach is not equipped to provide the motivation that is demanded at present. He should do himself a favour and walk away.
Fitz Hayles, United States

Boycott's job is that of a critic and of someone who incites debate, and he does that suitably well. England has struggled to produce a player of half his calibre as player or commentator. Amazing personality and for those who have followed cricket for 50, or hell, 100 years would have watched Boycott on Starsports and ESPN and would know very well that he admires and criticizes in equal measure. All hail Geoff Boycott!
Talha Zaheer, Canada

I think it's worth at looking at other coaches; a good example is the Australian John Buchanan. But the main question for England is when is the best time for England to change coaches? I think most would agree after the World Cup.
Sam Greenwald, Australia

Boycott is very much right. I do not believe that Duncan Fletcher has shown any great talent or ability to think on his feet. Englan's success in the last Ashes was not due to Duncan but more due to Vaughan and the team itself. Fletcher has shown himself to be quite incapable of lifting the team from the depths of despair which is the hallmark of a great coach. He has taken credit for the Ashes and not done much otherwise.
Lakshman Balasubramanyam UK

Whilst I am not privy to dressing-room goings on, the onfield performance of some of the key players is poor at best. Why this should be showcased to the world I do not understand and Harmison's performance is my case in point. I do not know whether the coach should be changed and if so when but Boycott's point cannot be ignored/ taken lightly.
Nirbhay Singh Tanzania

Why should Fletcher be sacked from his job when with he has had such a good record in Test matches? As far as the ODI format is concerned, I agree this has been disastrous. However, consider a simple tweak to the side - Lewis replaces Harmison who continuously fails with the white ball; Collingwood comes in at No. 3 (the most reliable batsman) and the sloggers (a non-pejorative term in ODI!) go lower down the order. Would England have lost to India with that line up?
SR Sahay Portugal

One thing I love about Boycott is that he is very honest and outspoken and doesn't fear anyone when he is giving his views. I think overall Fletcher has shown a genuine weakness in building up a good one-day side. England have got the players but their attitude and strategy just lacks power in the one-dayers. They need someone with fresh ideas...someone who is experienced and has had some success particularly in one-dayers.
Kamran Saeed Pakistan

Come on Mr.Boycott it's time you do a reality check. Success for England is a matter of getting the fittest and proven eleven on the park. I'm confident England will be a different side come the Ashes.
John Pradeep Karunatilleke Sri Lanka

I can't quite believe Boycott's remarks. I didn't realise that beating Pakistan 3-0 in a Test series with a depleted side and then drawing a one-day series was the end of a shelf-life. Boycott just gobs off to get attention. Unfortunately he gobs off so frequently he is difficult to ignore.
Stephen Way UK

No way! Geoff Boycott is crazy. How would that help England in any way if they get a new coach now before the Ashes, triangular tournament v NZ and Aus and the World Cup? They can, however, get extra help in the one-day department.
Jo Venter South Africa

Completely agree with Geoff Boycott about Duncan Fletcher. The time for change is well overdue despite the good job he did in the past.
Robert Ogle, UK

Once again, the great Geoff Boycott opens his stupid mouth! It took a foreign coach to help England regain The Ashes. Their focus should be on retaining them rather than worrying about "Pyjama Cricket" that is being played in India. All I can say is "Go Duncan and the boys!"
Mike Hall Australia

Sack Fletcher weeks from the Ashes? Brilliant! I'd say go for it. Time for bravado, new broom, expect the unexpected, etc. (Here I must declare an interest. I'm Australian.)
Kim Loughran, Sweden

Irrespective of Boycott's view, surely with the World Cup and more importantly the Ashes around the corner, this is a totally stupid comment. What does he expect to gain from this, England to find a new coach before the two biggest events in English cricket?
James Pickering UK

I think Fletcher has made the England team an old boys' network. All the people who performed in the Ashes had their future secured for the long term. He has his favourites in the side such as Geraint Jones, Ashley Giles, whereas some of players are left to feel like poor relations.
James Wilson New Zealand

Lest we forget this is a man who has serious problems admitting when he is wrong; didn't he slag off Fletcher and Troy Cooley when they first came to coach England? Boycott is a relic from another time who will constantly harp on about his day and loves the sound of his own voice. Be gone Boycs, you are nowt but a parody of yourself.
Grant Doughty UK

I think that it is time to look beyond Fletcher. Boycott is right to start the debate. Nobody ever questions Fletcher's decisions, we always blame the captain or the individual on a critical level, so to that end, Fletcher has been untouchable. As for results since the Ashes in 2005, it's been mediocre at best. Instead of pushing on to the next level and walloping all in sight, England have had lucky breaks against teams that don't care much for Test cricket and subsequently, get hammered in the ODIs.
Damien Cahill Ireland

Geoff Boycott has really hit the nail on the head with his column. England's two performances in the Champions Trophy were nothing short of a disgrace, a complete embarrassment. Duncan Fletcher's loyalty to some of the England players has been commendable, and had a huge pay off with the Ashes result last year (although we would have lost the series 3-1 had McGrath not been injured). But the failure to progress in the one day game is beyond belief.
Mark Lane UK

I have to agree 100% with Geoff Boycott's sentiments, although I don't believe now is the right time to discard Fletcher.
Graham Porter UK

England are one of the poorest one-day sides in the world. We are years behind the best teams and Fletcher must bear some responsibility for this. The attitude to one day internationals (that they are the poor relation of Test matches) is as outdated as the tactics. Could England's pathetic showing in the Champions Trophy be due to having one eye on the Ashes?
Nick Toal UK

Mr Boycott can't have his cake and eat it, our priority is rightly Test cricket and Fletcher's results since he took over have been nothing short of miraculous.
Ed Tryon, UK

The real question that needs to be asked is why Andrew Strauss isn't captain. The statistics are there for reading. He is more successful, more detached and quite frankly the England team looked a lot happier and settled when he was in charge. The trouble with England supporters is we put someone on a pedestal and refuse to see their faults, therefore shifting the blame to some other scapegoat.
Alex Proffitt, UK

Whilst I think Boycott's comments may be a little premature, I think he has certainly achieved what he intended to - start a discussion on the fact that England's inconsistency does pose some serious questions at times. It's all well and happy when they are winning but when they lose, it proves that they still struggle to find consistency which would make them a world force.
Amar UK

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