'A lot of people have bosses who don't rate them as much as other people and I think he was mine' - Stuart Broad

Seamer suggests 'communication disappeared' when Ed Smith was national selector

George Dobell
George Dobell
Stuart Broad was Player of the Series after being left out of England's side for the first Test of last summer  •  Getty Images

Stuart Broad was Player of the Series after being left out of England's side for the first Test of last summer  •  Getty Images

Stuart Broad has suggested the "communication disappeared" when Ed Smith was national selector but insisted he would "understand" if he is left out of England's Test side at any stage this summer.
Broad took to Sky Sports to register his anger and disappointment after he was left out of England's side for the first Test of last summer. He made his point even more eloquently on the pitch, being named England's player of the series just a few weeks later.
While Broad is adamant he would like to play all seven Tests in the English summer, he accepts it is not "realistic" to play every game and says he would "absolutely" understand if the team management decided to leave him out to "build experience into different players".
"Last year I was disgruntled because the selectors had said the first Test team of the summer will be our best team," Broad said. "For someone who had been through the Ashes successfully, been through South Africa successfully and stayed fit, I felt it was my shirt. I felt I was in the best team. So to be told I suddenly wasn't in the best team with my record in England, that's what upset me.
"Is it realistic I'm going to play every Test? No. But if the communication is done well then you understand the reasons for it. You understand why you might miss certain games to be fit for other games. That along with building experience into different players.
"If I had a choice I'd want to play all seven Tests. Part of the reason I don't play white ball cricket any more is so I'm fit and available for Test cricket and fresh when I'm needed. But if Chris Silverwood decides he needs to get experience into some players and have a look at a different line-up and it's explained in a good way… absolutely, I would understand.
"I pride myself on being available and ready. I'm bowling well, taking wickets for Notts and helping win games. I don't think many could argue against Jimmy and I being in the best bowling attack in England, but if you need to get experience and overs into bowlers that is what it is.
"It's when the communication disappears; that's when players can't see reasons or see through it."
That complaint about communication would appear to be directed firmly towards Smith. While Broad rates Smith's overall as "a success", he admits their own relationship was strained.
"You can say [Smith's period as National Selector] was a success in the sense that the team won games and a World Cup," Broad said. "And he brought some fine players through.
"But from my point of view we struggled a bit on the communication side and probably saw the game of cricket slightly differently. A lot of people have bosses who don't rate them as much as other people and I think he was mine. He probably didn't rate me as much as other players. That's fine but I kept trying to prove some selection decisions wrong.
"I really disagreed with getting left out in Barbados [at the start of 2019]. It's one of the best places to bowl as a tall fast bowler. And there are a few occasions where I have felt a bit disgruntled and didn't have the clarity of communication that I would have liked. That Test I missed at the Ageas Bowl is the only English Test I've missed in what, 10 years? And that was through selection.
"I am very open to being told things. You have a discussion face to face and then have a beer and move on. That's how I like to do things. Maybe Ed and I didn't have that sort of relationship. But he did a lot for bringing through some young cricketers and giving them exposure to the international scene. But he didn't rate me overly highly and I just had to keep proving that view wrong."
Broad, now aged 34, is at what he terms "the sexy phase" of his career.
"In Ryan Giggs' last few years at Manchester United he wouldn't play every game but he'd have a big impact at certain times," Broad said. "I'm sure it was made very clear what his role was in the side. If that means that Jimmy Anderson and I get rested at certain times then that's much easier to take.
"I still want to be around to help and guide bowlers through the Test match. We're all part of a unit wanting to get the team better and better. But if I had a choice I'd want to play all seven.
"It's nice to be able to share my experience. Peter Moores calls it the sexy stage of your career: you know what you're doing, you don't have too many bad days because if you bowl a bad ball you know why you've bowled a bad ball. You're also sharing all your information on how to be competitive, how to grab momentum, how to take a stride forward in a game.
"I look at Jimmy aged 38. Three years ago I'd have thought no chance I'd get anywhere near that. Now I can sit here and think why not play and enjoy it? The ECB have looked after Jimmy really well in the last few years. Whenever he's had a niggle or an injury they've rehabbed him back and given him the chance to play more cricket. Why wouldn't I want the same opportunity? Keep enjoying it, keep learning and keep winning games for Notts and England.
"But there's a difference between being rested and dropped. I feel as though I've had a career of being dropped and others have had a career of being rested. If I can finish my career with the games I miss being through being rested rather than dropped then I'll be a bit happier."
Lifebuoy are proud to partner with Chance to Shine, as part of their ambition to double the rate of handwashing in the UK. Stuart Broad was coaching schoolchildren at Hague Primary School, as a representative of the England Cricket team, of which Lifebuoy are also a partner.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo