Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 26th 2013 Contents Kevin Pietersen has "less than
zero interest" in Graeme Swann s
parting shot about arrogant Test
cricketers. Swann has been at pains
to make it abundantly clear, having
failed to do so in his retirement
press conference on Sunday, that
he was not referring to any of the
current England team when he
bemoaned the attitude of players
who are "up their own backsides."
Swann s remarks were initially and
widely interpreted to be aimed at
Pietersen, with whom he has not
always historically had the easiest
After Swann s clarification, first
on Twitter and then in his Sun col-
umn, it is understood he was talking
about Test opponents rather than
Pietersen nonetheless, inevitably,
faced a succession of questions about
Swann s remarks when he too spoke
to the press on Christmas Eve.
One query about Swann s elderly
grandma s belief that "nasty" Aus-
tralians have hastened the off-spin-
ner s retirement left Pietersen espe-
In answer, he spelled out his
antipathy for all topics emanating
from Swann s surprise decision to
call time on his career in the middle
of an Ashes series already lost.
"My interest levels in yesterday
are less than zero," Pietersen said.
"I ve got no interest, no interest."
He was speaking shortly after the
publication of Swann s newspaper
column, in which he wrote: "I wasn t
talking about Kevin Pietersen or any
England player when I made com-
ments during my retirement press
"Kev and I have had a very good
working relationship, and his rein-
tegration back into the team has
been spot on.
"The truth is I was talking about
other players around the world who
don t carry themselves in a manner
I think is befitting of wearing an
"With hindsight, I should have
clarified there and then that I wasn t
talking about England players, rather
than leaving it hanging in the air."
For the record, Swann stressed
that he believes the behaviour of
Pietersen---certainly since he
returned to the England fold after
his contract wrangles and other con-
troversies in 2012---and his other
former teammates is exemplary.
"There is no way I would think
any England players are up their own
"They handle themselves
Pietersen, in any case, insists that
an accusation of arrogance hardly
measures up to the insults he expects
to come his way again from the
home crowd in the Boxing Day Test
at the MCG.
"You should come and field with
me on Thursday or Friday, come and
see what I get called on the bound-
"There s a lot worse things I ve
Neither is he worried about former
England batsman Geoff Boycott s
contention that he should be
dropped for batting like a "mug" so
far this winter.
Where Pietersen is famed for his
attacking intent, stoic opener Boycott
was once dropped himself for slow
scoring despite making a double-
"I have the greatest admiration
for Geoffrey Boycott, what he
achieved for England," Pietersen said.
"But I think the way Geoffrey
played and the way I play are totally
He did manage a minor endorse-
ment of Swann s unexpected deci-
sion to retire, with the Ashes gone
and having bowled well below his
best while Australia established an
unassailable 3-0 lead with two Tests
"Everybody makes decisions,"
Pietersen said. "He s a 34-year-old
grown man. He s had a fantastic
career for England, (and) it gives
Monty Panesar an incredible oppor-
tunity to become a great bowler."
Pietersen is one year Swann s jun-
ior, but this winter s Ashes debacle
has not sapped any of his resolve to
carry on in pursuit of 10,000 Test
runs---he has 8,052 at present---and
towards another Ashes and World
Cup in 2015.
"I don t understand why you guys
talk about everybody in the same
light," he said. "I m 33 years of age;
I m batting as well as I ve ever bat-
"I ll retire when I can t get up to
play for England. I m as good as gold
at the moment."
He has been more frustrated than
anyone with his failure to make a
significant contribution in the last
"I ve got myself in every single
time," he said. "I felt like a clown in
Adelaide---when I hit that ball to
midwicket off Siddle---I just didn t
feel good at the crease at all.
"Some days you have them. Every
other time I ve batted on this trip,
I ve felt really, really good."
In an increasingly tetchy exchange,
he added: "A couple of times I ve
got out, and a couple of other times
fortune didn t favour the brave.
"It s just a case of making sure I
keep doing what I do, because it s
"Of course it annoys me---but you
guys write that it doesn t annoy me,
and I m totally cool with it!"
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Michu is likely to be sidelined
for six weeks, with the forward
requiring surgery on his right
The 27-year-old Spaniard,
who has scored 28 goals since
joining from Rayo Vallecano in
2012, has been hindered by ankle
and knee problems this season.
Manager Michael Laudrup
said on Tuesday the operation
is set to be carried out in the
next week and Michu should be
back playing in "around a month
and a half." The loss of Michu
further dents Swansea s attack-
ing resources with winger
Nathan Dyer likely to be side-
lined until February with an
ankle ligament injury.
Laudrup says the injuries
mean Swansea is likely to bring
in a forward during the January
Swansea to be without forward Michu for 6 weeks
Kevin Pietersen... batting as well as ever
There is no way I would
think any England
players are up their
Pietersen dismisses Swann's statement on arrogant cricketers
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