Explanations demanded after England’s derailment

England selector Geoff Miller has demanded an explanation from skipper Michael Vaughan, who described selection for the disastrous second Test against South Africa as ”confused”, while a trio of former captains has spoken out.

The selectors have come in for criticism, most particularly over the late call-up of Nottinghamshire debutant seamer Darren Pattinson, who had made just 11 previous first-class appearances.

Following the 10-wicket thrashing that put South Africa 1-0 up in the four-Test series, Miller told the Daily Telegraph: ”The selectors are not here to make Michael’s job harder, which is why I’d like him to clarify his comments.

”It’s been made into a massive issue by the media and I want to hear his side of the story.”

Miller also told the Sun: ”I’m the national selector, Michael is the captain — we’re both in this together.”

Three former England captains added their voices to the debate amid doubts as to who had the final say on the selection of 29-year-old Pattinson.

Ian Botham said in his column for the Daily Mirror that the selectors had made ”appalling, embarrassing and downright wrong” decisions.

Botham said: ”The England team selection on Friday knocked me sideways.

”I feel very sorry for Darren Pattinson, but I don’t have any sympathy for the selectors who lost all sense of perspective and embarrassed English cricket.

”It was the most illogical, pathetic and diabolical piece of selecting I’ve seen.”

Pattinson was the first new cap awarded since Geoff Miller, James Whitaker and Ashley Giles took over on the selection panel.

Geoff Boycott said it would be unfair to blame Pattinson for the debacle.

Boycott wrote in the Daily Telegraph: ”He bowled steadily and didn’t let anyone down.

”But this was one of the first big decisions taken by England’s new selection panel, and they got it badly wrong.

”They need to admit their mistake and realise that wild hunches are no way to build an international cricket team.”

Nasser Hussain told the Daily Mail the players, and Vaughan especially, had to look at themselves.

”Geoff Miller is in charge of selection but there has to be collective responsibility and we can’t forget that it was the players who lost the match.

”The bottom line is that the selectors chose to bring Darren Pattinson into the squad but it was Michael Vaughan, as captain, and coach Peter Moores who decided he should be included in the side.”

And Hussain concluded: ”Ultimately, as captain, you have to take the blame.” — AFP

 

AFP

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