New Zealand news March 6, 2013

Vettori, Patel reprimanded after drinking incident

ESPNcricinfo staff

Daniel Vettori, the former New Zealand captain, and Jeetan Patel have apologised for their conduct after a night out in Queenstown that left Patel unable to take the field for New Zealand XI during the tour match against England. While neither spinner is currently involved with the international side, confirmation of another drinking incident among its players led New Zealand Cricket to release a statement calling their behaviour "completely unacceptable".

Patel was a late call-up for the New Zealand XI, after Ish Sodhi's withdrawal, and conceded 122 runs from his 21 overs in the match without taking a wicket. He missed the second day's play, reported at the time as due to his feeling unwell, but it has since been revealed that Patel suffered mild concussion after an alleged altercation with a bouncer outside a bar the night before.

NZC said it was "deeply disappointed" with the pair. The news comes after Doug Bracewell was ruled out of the first Test with a cut foot sustained following a party at his house. Bracewell was hurt while cleaning up, although he also apologised for the incident and was "reminded of his responsibilities".

"New Zealand Cricket understands that Jeetan Patel was refused entry to a bar in Queenstown," Fairfax Media reported on Wednesday. "He subsequently fell and hit his head. Patel returned to the team hotel, felt unwell and took himself to A and E.

"Team management has spoken strongly to Patel and Vettori, telling them that their behaviour was completely unacceptable. Both players apologised to team management at the time."

Vettori has not played any cricket since the World Twenty20 and was in Queenstown to work with the New Zealand medical staff as he continues his recovery from an Achilles injury. He said: "My behaviour was completely unprofessional in going out and I should have spent time with Jeetan in another way. I would like to apologise to the NZ Cricket medical team who I was there to work with and to anyone else who is disappointed in my behaviour."

Patel returned to the Test side in Vettori's enforced absence after a strong English season with Warwickshire, where he helped them to the County Championship. He took 11 wickets in four Tests against India and Sri Lanka but was dropped following the tour of South Africa, to be replaced by the uncapped Bruce Martin. Patel, who is not centrally contracted, is understood to have been struggling since the death of his mother in January.

"I am sorry for my behaviour that evening and I accept that it was totally inappropriate for me to be out drinking during a match where I was representing my country," Patel said.

Rumours about Patel surfaced in the aftermath of Bracewell suffering his self-inflicted injury, although NZC initially refused to comment on the matter. In the build-up to the first Test, the New Zealand coach, Mike Hesson, deflected questions about an alleged drinking culture in the set-up.

"We've got really good standards in terms of the expectations we have on our players. They are also human and also spend a lot of time away from the group," Hesson said at the time. "The expectation is that what they do certainly doesn't conflict or affect their preparation and we're pretty strong on that."

Last year, Bracewell and Jesse Ryder were dropped from the ODI squad after breaking team protocol banning the consumption of alcohol. Ryder, who had a history of drink-related indiscretions, has not played for New Zealand since, having embarked on a self-imposed sabbatical from international cricket.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • josh on March 7, 2013, 16:00 GMT

    Dont see 2 many probs with 2 of the best spinners of the modern era(1992-2012) havn a social drink together...

  • Haroon on March 7, 2013, 15:24 GMT

    @Prateesh kumar. I suggest you read the article again. No one said drinking was an offense. The real issue is unable to take the field because of a hangover and ill conduct off the field during a tour match. They apologised themselves so anyone who thinks oh well, it happens, etc etc, it really shouldn't... especially as JP put it, when your representing your country

  • Dummy4 on March 7, 2013, 14:42 GMT

    Drinking not an offence...let them allow

  • Greg on March 7, 2013, 6:10 GMT

    Hassan, A and E is New Zealand's accident and emergency department at the hospital

  • Dummy4 on March 7, 2013, 5:55 GMT

    @Hassan Ahmed. A & E = Accident and Emergency

  • Dummy4 on March 7, 2013, 5:11 GMT

    Can anyone here tell me what does A and E mean? Its mentioned right in the middle of the article. I dont understand it .... :S

  • Roo on March 7, 2013, 4:46 GMT

    So they had 1 drink (no mention of any more) - did they drink lite beer?... No mention in the article so who really knows?...

    Why was Patel refused entry? Every Kiwi (& most Aussies) would recognise Vettori with him - so was there was an issue with how he looks?... That he was probably shoved by the bouncer, thus hitting his head on the ground should be more of a concern...

    That said, no cricketer should be out night-clubbing during or leading up to a match - surely a dumb choice of actions & not limited to NZ but frequent occurrences in Eng & Oz over the years...

  • Roo on March 7, 2013, 4:39 GMT

    @clarke501... Patel bowled 14 overs for 81 on the 1st day - the 2nd morning Gillespie & Wagner finished of the Eng innings... His bowling is more of a problem atm considering his Test average @48.46 & s.r. @90.8 - probably lucky to make the 2nd XI team...

  • Adam on March 7, 2013, 2:40 GMT

    At least, Patel is useful off the field. The man is a useless bower, who should feel lucky to be picked, due to the small poll of talent available in NZ. After repeated failure, he still gets picked. Amazing. huh

  • Dummy4 on March 7, 2013, 2:08 GMT

    And nobody is investigating why Patel was not allowed into the bar!! Terrible coverage of the situation:) I actually made my way from California to Queenstown when Sachin blasted a century in Christchurch. Queenstown is the bomb. Really cool place, loved it. The hotel I stayed in sucked..I had to sleep diagonally on the bed but other than town. Nothing bonds better than alcohol. C'mon NZC you need to some alcohol in your program with Ryders attached:) pun intended.

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