Strauss opens up about KP text saga

England

Former England captain Andrew Strauss has finally revealed, in his book 'Driving Ambition', how the texting saga between the ECB and Kevin Pietersen affected him, and how it went down last year.

Former England captain Andrew Strauss has finally revealed, in his book 'Driving Ambition', how the texting saga between the ECB and Kevin Pietersen affected him, and how it went down last year.

Pietersen sent 'provocative' text messages to the South African team during the Test series in England, allegedly calling Strauss a rude Afrikaans word. Those texts were never recovered, so their exact contents are unknown.

This all came to light ahead of the Test at Lord's, which was Strauss' 100th and final for the Three Lions, and he said it was one of the least exciting moments in his career, as he'd been dealing with the test saga the week before.

Strauss wrote, as revealed in the serialised column in the <i>Daily Mail</i>: "It started days earlier when I took a call from (England head coach Andy) Flower.

"'Straussy, I don't know how to tell you this, but I have received information that KP has sent some text messages to the South African players criticising you and perhaps even giving them information on how to get you out. A newspaper is apparently in possession of the texts and intends to print them.'

"I was dumbfounded. I wasn't all that bothered about him sending texts to a few South African players he knew quite well. I did, however, have issues with him criticising me to the opposition.

"That felt like talking out of school, not to mention giving the opposition a way to drive a wedge between Pietersen and myself and the team. And if he really had given information about how to get me out, well, that amounted to treachery and I would never forgive him."

The former skipper then said that the PR exercise from the Pietersen camp that raged ahead of the Lord's Test detracted from the match, and in the end the selectors had no choice but to drop Pietersen for that game.

He added: "With the clock ticking down, it became apparent we were not going to get to the bottom of the issue before the start of the game. There was no option, therefore, other than to leave him out of the side.

"After being dropped for the Test, KP admitted sending 'provocative' text messages and after the match came to my house and sincerely apologised. I accepted his apology and hold no grudges against him.

"I am also confident, in retrospect, that he did not give the South Africans information on how to get me out."

He did say though: "The nagging frustration I still have is that all of that time, effort and commitment from our players over a three-year period to make our environment special and different were undermined in one episode."

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