The Press Tent: Vaughan v Trott edition

Blog Opinion

Hello and welcome back inside the Press Tent, Cricket365’s attempt to wade through the way this great sport is covered. What a week!

Vaughan vs Trott

Well, it has all kicked off. Jonathan Trott’s autobiography is out and it is being serialised in The Times. In the first instalment Trott raises his concerns over his treatment by former England captain Michael Vaughan when he was forced to return home from the 2013/14 Ashes as a result of suffering from a mental health issue.

At the time, the wording that was used by the ECB and Trott himself to describe his issue was all a bit clumsy, and as a result there was some confusion as to the reasons that Trott left the tour.

Vaughan wrote a column on 16 March 2014 saying he felt “a little bit conned” by Trott. Vaughan went on to write:

We were allowed to believe he was struggling with a serious mental health issue and treated him with sensitivity and sympathy. He was obviously not in a great place but he was struggling for cricketing reasons and not mental, and there is a massive difference.”

This was, at best, insensitive and Trott has claimed that Vaughan never approached him to ask him what he was going through. Trott says in his book that he felt that Vaughan had it in for him and brought up Vaughan’s connection with sports agents ISM, who represent a number of current and aspiring England cricketers.

As well as being a high-profile summariser, he was also Business Development Manager for ISM, a sports management agency,” Trott wrote. “If I was out of the way, and Vaughan’s scorn for my condition made it quite clear that he thought I should be banished forever, there might there be more room in the side for the likes of Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow, Scott Borthwick and Ben Stokes? Only Michael Vaughan can tell you for sure whether he was influenced by that relationship.”

jonathan-trott

Vaughan is far from happy at this insinuation, and his Telegraph colleagues have gone to bat (sorry) for him. Paul Hayward, the Telegraph’s chief sports writer, tweeted the following:

Some abysmal claims made by Jonathan Trott in his book. I’ve never been less than proud of the way Telegraph Sport covers mental health.”

That Hayward would tweet that about an article that Vaughan wrote under the headline, “Jonathan Trott must accept team-mates and opponents will feel he did a runner” is surprising. Suggesting someone who has a mental health issue is running away is far from sympathetic.

Vaughan himself has mentioned involving solicitors and told the Telegraph that he did not hold such a role with ISM at the time of writing the article.

The article asserts, wrongly, that when writing about Jonathan Trott in The Telegraph in 2013, I held a role with ISM that in some way influenced my comments concerning Jonathan. In fact, at the time of writing that article, I held no role with ISM other than being a client of ISM. I have never managed or played any role in the management of any of the cricketers named in today’s article.”

This a question of perception. Vaughan has very close links with ISM and was announced as a Business Development Manager with much fanfare back in 2009. He says he did not have the role at the time of writing the article that so offended Trott, but as Twitter gobshite Peter Miller pointed out Vaughan’s own website mentioned him being in that role as late as March 2015.

Holt revisited

In the last edition of the Press Tent we brought you our searing insight into the Daily Mail’s chief sports correspondent’s views on anthem singing. Oliver Holt told us that it “jars” that England’s captain Eoin Morgan did not belt out God Save the Queen with all his heart.

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Last week Holt told us that Morgan should have listened to the advice of the high ups and gone to Bangladesh.

[The] advice now is that it is safe for England to play in Bangladesh. The rumours are, however, that Morgan thinks he knows better.”

This week Holt told us that we should respect San Fransisco 49ers quarter-back Colin Kaepernick for standing up to those in authority.

I mean, what would you rather have? A man like Kaepernick or someone who doesn’t have the wit or conviction to stand up for anything except his ability to add another nought to his salary? A man like Kaepernick or someone who does what he is told to do by an agent or a manager. A man like Kaepernick or someone who cannot think for himself?”

And what did Kaepernick do that deserved such praise for being his own man – he has decided to not respect the national anthem in the traditional way; he “takes a knee” during the rendition of Star Spangled Banner before the match begins. Jarring.

Put a Cork in it

The County Championship has reached a thrilling conclusion and Sky Sports were at Lord’s for the match between Middlesex and Yorkshire. On day one cricket went peak cricket and the players wandered off the field at a stadium that has floodlights because it was too dark to play.

Former England bowler Dominic Cork was Sky Sports’ man on the ground to give us a blow by blow account of what was going on. After just over a minute of rambling explanation of what was going on that threw little light on the situation (sorry, again) Cork told us “with my experience…it’s dark”.

Cheers Dom.

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