graeme swann

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Graeme Swann: What he said, really meant and definitely didn’t

Swann bowling against Sri Lanka at Lord's in t...

Swann bowling against Sri Lanka at Lord’s in the second Test. Scorecard. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Graeme Swann hopes to bury Kevin Pietersen and his autobiography 20,000 leagues under the sea.

What he said:

“I expected it to be the biggest work of fiction since Jules Verne and that seems to have happened.”

Graeme Swann has little time for Kevin Pietersen and his rantings. The former England off-spinner and KP’s ex-teammate dismissed his allegations of being a bully during his tenure with the squad.

“The one thing will say. I immediately realised it was codswallop when I read the character assassination of Matt Prior. Tragically I don’t think Kev realises the one person who fought tooth and nail to keep him in the side is the one person he is now assassinating: Matt Prior.

Kevin has been quite clever because the guys still playing he has left alone and he hopes to get back in again one day. He has picked on people who he thinks can’t answer back.”

He added:

“If that was the case a lot of people would have flagged it up before. We had a magnificent team ethos and team spirit until Mitchell Johnson took his blindfold off and then it all fell apart.

It was strange to watch my team-mates this summer, all those people I’d bullied all those years. I’d have loved to have been out there giving them Chinese burns.”

Paul Downton said:

“What I do know is there’s been no formal or informal complaint about bullying.”

Matt Prior tweeted:

What Swann really meant:

“No one really expected KP’s book to be complimentary of his teammates or the then-administration. Of course, I’m surprised by the allegations. But what did I lose out on? Nothing! So I’ll keep mum and say nothing about being a bit of a bully on the field. An atmosphere of fear? Ha! Not something to complain about when I’m the one held in awe.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“I’m going to be attending a seminar by Mitchell Johnson ‘Bullying and harassment on the cricket field: How to confront and overcome it’.”

Graeme Swann: What he said, really meant and definitely didn’t

Graeme Swann

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.”

Graeme Swann: What he said, really meant and definitely did not

Graeme Swann Reiterates That Skippers Are To The Manner Born

What he said (via Daily Mail):

"It’s an honest book and anyone reading it will realize that the one person getting assassinated in it is myself.”

Graeme Swann makes no apologies for his remarks concerning Kevin Pietersen’s leadership in his autobiography,The Breaks Are Off.

Speaking to Paul Newman, Swann said:

I completely stand by what I said that Kev is not a natural leader of men. I only know two people from my time who I’d put in that category. One is Stephen Fleming and the other is Andrew Strauss. It’s that rare.

You can have good captains but to be an absolute natural leader, like a Mike Brearley, is a rarity. I certainly don’t consider myself one when I’ve captained and I don’t think Alastair Cook is. He’s a good captain but it just doesn’t come as naturally to him. Straussy was born to be England captain. Fleming was born to be a captain. I just don’t think people took what I wrote in context.

Defending his frankness, Swann said:

What it boils down to is that it can be OK to do a book but make sure you don’t say anything – and that’s not me. I would never forgive myself if I went through my career kowtowing to people and being a yes man. And I would never have forgiven myself if I’d pulled my punches. It’s an honest book and anyone reading it will realise that the one person getting assassinated in it is myself.

I rip myself to pieces because that’s how I feel about my career before it took off. I look back in embarrassment at a lot of it and I want that to come across. I don’t want to pretend I’ve always been in the right and everyone else has been wrong. I fully realise you’re responsible for everything in your life and I live by that.

Swann adds:

“When I wrote it I didn’t think it was controversial in the slightest because I didn’t say anything in the book that I wouldn’t say in an interview. Some people who applaud me for being honest suddenly turned on me.”

What he really meant:

“Of course, I’m assuming my readers are perspicacious.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“My royalties are killing me.”

Kevin Pietersen: What he said, really meant and definitely did not

Kevin Pietersen Says ‘No Bio’ on Graeme Swann’s Cricketing Career

What he said:

“I still do not agree to anyone writing a book in the middle of his career.”

English cricketer Kevin Pietersen makes his moments count.

After guiding Graeme Swann’s T20 side to its only victory on Indian soil in the return series, the South-African born player communicated his views about the off-spinners autobiography.

Swann criticised Pietersen’s leadership in his book, saying he should never have skippered the English side.

What he really meant:

“The chapter named Kevin Pietersen is not yet closed.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“Maybe, cricketers should take a cue from the Don (Bradman) and pen one right at the outset.”

Graeme Swann: What he said, really meant and definitely did not

Graeme Swann Is Not a ‘Character Assassinator’

What he said:

“They would have realised it was not a character assassination.”

Graeme Swann clears the air on the controversy surrounding Kevin Pietersen’s portrayal in his autobiography, “The Breaks Are Off”.

Swann, in his book, dissed the No.4 saying he was not a natural leader and should never have been made skipper.

Swann is skipper of the T20 side and needs Kevin Pietersen to fire on all cylinders to salvage a disastrous ODI tour of India where the visitors were thrashed 5-0.

Swann said:

“My relationship with KP has unchanged. It’s fine. I am afraid people churned out stories that did not exist.”

Swann defended his characterisation of KP:

When I wrote the book it was certainly not a character assassination on anyone. It was certainly not more than myself. So I did not feel the alter the timing of its release.
It was an opinion of mine some years ago. Some people chose that for a headline of me slamming (Pietersen). A few more people could have seen it the way it was and they would have realised it was not a character assassination.

What Graeme Swann really meant:

“And they would have realised that the book is a huge bore.”

What Graeme Swann definitely didn’t:

“Kevin, how about a half-way split of the royalties?”

Andy Flower: What he said, really meant and definitely did not


Andy Flower Calls Foul On The Written Word

What he said:

I personally don’t think that it’s a good idea for current players to be talking about their fellow players. The written word does come across very, very differently — when you can’t judge a person’s tone — and particularly with Swann’s words, that is an accurate and important point.

English cricket team director, Andy Flower, is unequivocal that Graeme Swann was inappropriate in his criticism of then skipper and fellow teammate, Kevin Pietersen, in his autobiography, “The Breaks Are Off”—serialised in an English daily.

Swann is severe on Pietersen terming him the wrong person for the job.

Flower, however, brushed aside suggestions that the book has caused strife within the team.

Flower said:

“It’s all been handled in-house — without many problems. Pietersen and Swann get on well, and I think Pietersen has handled it very maturely.”

Commenting further on Pietersen, currently touring India for the return ODI series, Flower considers the No.4 an integral part of the squad:

When Kevin was competing in the game any -comments in a book had no place in his mind.

I expect him to score runs, that is why we pick him. If we didn’t expect it we wouldn’t pick him so I look -forward to him doing that soon. I personally disagree with -current players making comments about their team-mates. My personal opinion is that it is not the right thing to do.

I don’t think the commercial opportunities are that important to be honest. However, I think Pietersen has handled it very well and he and Swann get on fine. I think he has handled it very maturely and there aren’t any issues arising from it.

What Flower  really meant:

“What you say, is very, very different when it’s written out. There’s a finality about  it that’s damning. One thing to hear it, quite another to read it—in print.”

What Flower definitely didn’t:

“I guess it’s all right if the same thing were to be reiterated over and over again—verbally! Sledge him with it, chaps.”

Graeme Swann: What he said, really meant and definitely did not


England mob Swanny

Graeme Swann Provides Skipper Material

What he said:

“I lose my rag fairly easily, so the captains I’ve enjoyed playing under are the ones who don’t get flustered in the middle even when the pressure is on.”

Graeme Swann expounds on his reasons why Kevin Pietersen was not the right choice for skipper of the English cricket side.

Swann wrote—in the Sun:

There is no doubt Kevin Pietersen is a really fine batsman but he was never the right man to captain England.

Some people are better leaders of men and Kev, for all his talent, is not one of those natural leaders.

The English off-spinner further elaborated that he needed someone “who can calm me down”.

Swann said—of Pietersen:

“At one point in India, his leadership was reduced to screaming ‘F****** bowl f****** straight’ at everyone.”

Swann contrasts Andrew Strauss’ leadership saying “he is one of those guys who demands respect.”

The No. 1 Test bowler in the world commended Strauss:

He always says the right things and his word is never questioned.

If you were in the trenches, you’d pick him to be in charge and his captaincy is founded on leading from the front. He can be hard-nosed, too, if necessary.

What Graeme Swann really meant:

“You can rest assured asking me to ‘F****** bowl f****** straight’  got me to do anything but that.”

What Graeme Swann definitely didn’t:

“Just give us a ‘F****** skipper’—as long as it’s not me.”

Graeme Swann: What he said, really meant and definitely did not

Graham Swann at Lord's Cricket Ground 20th Jul...

Graeme Swann reflects on his former, ‘loony’ self.

What he said:

"Graeme Swann the captain would never pick Graeme Swann the kid.”

English off-spinner, Graeme Swann, while thrilled to lead national T20 side, believes that his younger self would not have found a place in the side—under him.

Swann added:

But the one regret I have about the young lunatic Graeme Swann is that there was not much Twenty20 around then. I’m sure I would be pretty good at it because I could bat in those days. I would have had a way of staying in the England squad for a few years while I developed my skills in the longer form.

The T20 skipper admitted that "the young lunatic is still in there, but I manage to hide him most of the time."

On the captaincy allowing him to exhibit his mind’s keen edge, Swann said,

No one would have believed this five years ago, least of all myself. It’s surreal in a way, but I have always harboured ambitions of captaining at first-class level and it is nice that I have got a chance if only for a couple of games to show the inner workings of my mind.

On leading in the abbreviated format:

It’s a reactions game. You can start with grandiose plans about how you want to start and they can change quickly. I am not sure it will be too maverick or out of the box, but I like to think I will be attacking. It is important in this form of the game to take wickets. That is what won us the World Twenty20.

Swann feels T20 games should replace ODIs:

It is the biggest game in the short format and somewhere down the line we will have to treat it a bit more seriously and play series of Twenty20 games.We are world champions but going into Sri Lanka we will only play half a dozen games or so in this format before that World Cup starts. For every touring team that comes over it will not be frowned upon if there was a three-game ODI series and a three-game Twenty20 series. That makes more sense than five one-dayers.

Swann disclaimed that his opinion coincided with those of the English Cricket Board (ECB), saying, “These are my views, not the views of my employer.”

What Swann really meant:

“Graeme Swann, the kid, would be such a pain in the butt for Graeme Swann, the No.1 off-spinner, skipper and elder statesman.”

What Swann definitely didn’t:

“There is a Graeme Swann in the younger lot.”

Graeme Swann: What he said, really meant and definitely did not


Graeme Swann is up to monkey business

What he said:

"I dedicate the series win to London zoo. Had a great time there with Wilf and Mrs Swann yesterday."

Graeme Swann, the self-appointed funny man in the English cricket squad, tweets his dedication of the ODI series win over India.

What he really meant:

“I’m going ape with joy.”

What he definitely didn’t (or did he?):

“Just monkeying around.”

Graeme Swann: What he said, really meant and definitely did not

Graham Swann at Lord's Cricket Ground 20th Jul...

Graeme Swann Feels Like a Nursemaid to his Younger Teammates

What he said:

"When they take their tops off you can see they’ve barely started puberty."

English off-spinner, Graeme Swann, likes to believe that he is the grizzled old veteran in the ODI squad likening his younger team-mates—Eoin Morgan and Jade Dernbach—to pubescent adolescents.

What he really meant:

“That’s what you get what calling me ‘Granddad’”.

What he definitely didn’t:

“You guys can always come up to me for advice on what to do for pimples and dandruff.”

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