Sport : Cricket

Flower: We've moved on from row

20th December 2012, 02:13pm

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Flower (right): KP row in the past

Flower (right): KP row in the past

England are looking forward to a harmonious future, with Kevin Pietersen "reintegrated" for good.

The superstar batsman is set to commute his four-month England and Wales Cricket Board contract into a full annual one, having satisfied his employers that all is well again after his summer of discontent.

Pietersen agreed a four-month deal at the end of September, in order to take part after all in the Test tour of India - which ended on Monday with a historic first series victory here since 1984-85.

Team director Andy Flower was central in the peace-making process which allowed Pietersen to heal wounds with management and some senior players after he fell out with them and was then not initially picked to travel to India.

Flower anticipates no further problems, after Pietersen played a full and important part in England's success on and off the field.

He is mindful that lessons can be learned from past problems, and their solutions, but is not inclined to dwell on them.

"We did move on from it as soon as we had our meetings and everyone made a commitment to do so," he said of the beginning of the negotiations which brought Pietersen back into the fold.

"I want to continue that, moving forward.

"We want to learn from the past, but we don't want to keep on revisiting it."

As for the future, Flower is optimistic.

"The contract won't be a problem," he said.

"Kevin has been excellent in every way.

"We don't all always get on with people all of the time - any of us in any walk of life - and everyone has made an effort to make it work.

"It's been really good fun and he should be very proud of the way he's operated out here both as an individual and as a player."

Pietersen's masterful hundred in Mumbai was the man-of-the-match performance in a comeback victory which set them on the way to their unexpected series success.

"In Mumbai he showed real skill in Indian conditions on a pitch that turned on the first day," added Flower.

"For him to score as quickly as he did there and put such pressure on the opposition bowlers really helped us turn the series around.

"He also scored a 73 and, I think, a 54 in the series - important innings - and he's been excellent in the field and in the dressing room."

Flower also spoke with admiration about the man-of-the-series exploits of Alastair Cook, prolific with the bat and an impressive tactician already since replacing Andrew Strauss after the dual Ashes-winning captain's retirement.

"We all know to come back from one down in these conditions to win a series is a hell of an achievement," Flower said.

"I think there are three England captains who have won out here - (Douglas) Jardine, (Tony) Greig and (David) Gower.

"Now Cook has done it as well, and that's a great achievement for him and the side.

"He's been superb as a leader.

"He's been watching the opposition and the tactics they employ, when he's had a chance to do that, and I think he's shown more nous out here than some foreign sides that come to these shores and don't adapt quickly or decisively enough.

"I think he's going to be an excellent leader for England. We're very lucky to follow a bloke of Strauss' quality with Cook."

Flower will make an early start to the Test tour of New Zealand next year.

He and a small group of Test specialists will fly out 10 days before the first warm-up match, while the remainder of the squad are still engaged in the limited-overs leg of the trip.


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