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Giles: We’re fully focused

Published: 
Sunday, March 2, 2014

Ashley Giles insists Kevin Pietersen and Matt Prior’s public disagreements will have no impact on the well-being of his ICC World Twenty20 squad. Under coach Giles and stand-in One-Day International captain Stuart Broad, England lost against West Indies on Friday and must battle back to stay in the three-match series at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium on Sunday.

Thousands of miles away, before even England took the field in Antigua, Pietersen was responding spikily on Twitter to comments attributed to Prior in a Dubai Q&A session. England’s record runscorer, discarded for good last month when he was omitted from this squad, and Test wicketkeeper and vice-captain Prior appear to have fallen out over varying versions of events during the descent to an Ashes whitewash this winter.
Giles urges the two of them to patch up their relationship, quietly, but is confident in any case that any more bickering will be no distraction to his players in the Windies.

“I don’t know that it’s particularly helpful for English cricket, but it has no effect on this group. I don’t follow Twitter. I get on with my job here. There are a lot of other guys on Twitter, but we’re very focused on this series out here.” Even so, a private conversation in good faith—rather than sniping on social media—is Giles’ advice. “I hope the guys are mature enough to pick up the phone and speak to each other. “You would hope in the end they would just find sense, pick up a phone and talk to each other about it rather than sharing it with the rest of the world. “There is no need for it. It has been a very emotional time—there has been a lot said ...Matt’s a good bloke, Kev’s a good bloke; let’s spend five minutes on it, and then move on.”