What he said:
“We’re happy to tootle along in a two-litre diesel in a Formula 1 race. “
Graeme Swann is still not convinced that Alistair Cook is the best thing to happen to English cricket especially when it comes to ODI cricket.
Cook had responded to his strident criticism thus:
“I don’t think it’s that helpful – especially from a so-called friend.”
Swann, however, continued in the same vein:
“Real mates are honest with each other. I’m no longer in the England dressing room and it is my job now as a pundit to give my honest thoughts.
I texted Cooky after the Test series victory over India saying I was proud of the way he conducted himself but that he should get away from the one-dayers as quickly as possible.
I think being one-day captain is a poisoned chalice for him. He just doesn’t need the job. The cricket England are playing in 50-over cricket is outdated and I fear it will be a painful winter for the team.
I don’t want him to be part of it. This is not a witch-hunt against ‘Cookie’ and I’m still a huge supporter of his captaincy in Test cricket. But, in one-day matches, I want England to play the exciting cricket they promised six months ago when Peter Moores took over as head coach.
We’re happy to tootle along in a two-litre diesel in a Formula One race.
If England do badly in the World Cup Cooky will be back to where he was earlier this summer when some people were waiting for him to mess up. He should be resting now, making sure he is fully recharged for the 17 Test matches England have next year.
I’m 100 per cent behind him as Test captain. I went to his wedding and he offers to send me a turkey each Christmas from his farm. I hope I’m not off his list now!”
What he really meant:
“ODI and T20 cricket is less about strategy,endurance, finesse and technique and more about tactics, fitness and speed. We can hardly have slow coaches chuggin’ along on high-speed rails.”
What he definitely didn’t:
“Just appoint me Cook’s tooter and I’ll change my tune fast enough.”