Ruthless Strauss moves fast to sack Moores
LONDON – Peter Moores was unceremoniously sacked as England coach on Saturday as new cricket supremo Andrew Strauss made a ruthless start to his new role.
Hours after former England captain Strauss was confirmed as the national team’s director of cricket, Moores’s second stint as coach was cut short after a disappointing year in charge of a struggling team.
Strauss has been tasked with resurrecting England’s fortunes, starting with home series against New Zealand and Australia in which they will bid to win back the Ashes they surrendered in a humbling 5-0 defeat in 2013-14.
“Andrew’s breadth of ideas, his passion for England cricket and his proven leadership skills shone out,” England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chief executive Tom Harrison said in a statement.
Strauss, 38, led England to two Ashes series victories and to the top of the world test rankings before retiring in 2012 after scoring more than 7,000 runs in 100 tests.
“He was an exceptional England captain, is an authoritative voice on the modern game and has a wealth of experience building successful teams,” Harrison added.
The 52-year-old Moores was appointed England coach for the second time a year ago but has experienced a difficult reign which ended with a dismal performance at this year’s World Cup and a disappointing 1-1 draw in a test series in West Indies.
“At the moment it’s difficult to put into words how I feel except to say how disappointed I am in the way my term as England coach has ended,” Moores said.
“I will walk away knowing I’ve given my all to the role and always put the team at the front of any decision-making.
“I am a passionate Englishman who believes in hard work and an investment in the right people will bring its rewards.”
Moores previously coached England from 2007-09 before being sacked following a fall-out with then captain Kevin Pietersen.
“I knew when I took on the role that this was going to be a tough period for English cricket and I would need time and support to get new players through,” Moores added.
“My frustration is not being given that time.”
England assistant coach Paul Farbrace has been put in charge of the team for the series against New Zealand but Strauss will want a permanent coach in place for the Ashes which start on July 8.
Former Australian test players Jason Gillespie and Justin Langer are believed to be among the favourites for the job but Strauss will cast his net wide to get the right man.
England captain Alastair Cook, Strauss’s former opening partner, may feel more secure in his role despite the departure of Moores, who was one of his biggest supporters.
Cook scored his first century for England in nearly two years against West Indies to ease the pressure on his place in the side but he faces a gruelling summer with an inexperienced team taking on a buoyant Australian side who will smell blood. –Reuters