Cricket: Atherton blows another fuse

Michael Atherton has been advised by a leading psychologist to give up newspapers for the time being - for the good of his mental health.

The England captain had an angry exchange with a broadsheet newspaper journalist after the historic first Test against Zimbabwe in Bulawayo, which ended in a draw with the scores tied. Atherton was apparently upset about what has been written and said about his form and England's prospects. He lost his temper after a question relating to the bowling tactics of the the newest and lowest-ranked Test nation, particularly the use of wides on the dramatic last day.

Atherton has fallen out with the media before, apologising last year to a Pakistan journalist he had labelled a buffoon.

However, doubts about Atherton being up to the task of leading England were dismissed by the psychologist Professor Cary Cooper. "I think Atherton is good for England. People should realise he is still a young man and the pressure on him is enormous," said Professor Cooper, who is based at Manchester's University of Science and Technology, said.

"When people are playing for their country, the majority are very wound up. I don't think there is anything in his nature that should worry us. It is safer to hit out at journalists than your team-mates, and he is normally such a cool customer.

"To me he is a typical stoical Lancashire lad, who usually stays in control of his emotions. My advice to him would be not to read the newspapers until the Test series is over. All he should worry about is getting on with the matches in hand and concentrating on what is good for himself and England."

England's squad, apart from the assistant coach, John Emburey, and the off-spinner Robert Croft, enjoyed a day trip to the Victoria Falls yesterday. They plan to practise both today and on Christmas Day morning in preparation for the second Test in Harare on Boxing Day.

There has been some confusion about whether it was Nick Knight, rather than Darren Gough, who was run out off the final ball of Sunday's dramatic run chase. The umpires, Ian Robinson and Steve Dunne, thought Knight was out, but the International Cricket Council referee, Hanumant Singh, insisted it was Gough. The England scorer, Malcolm Ashton, has Gough run out in his book, but is waiting for further evidence before making a final decision.

Life and Style
Steve Shaw shows Kate how to get wet behind the ears and how to align her neck
healthSteven Shaw - the 'Buddha of Breaststroke' - applies Alexander Technique to the watery sport
footballShirt then goes on sale on Gumtree
Terry Sue-Patt as Benny in the BBC children’s soap ‘Grange Hill’
voicesGrace Dent on Grange Hill and Terry Sue-Patt
Arts and Entertainment
The sight of a bucking bronco in the shape of a pink penis was too much for Hollywood actor and gay rights supporter Martin Sheen, prompting him to boycott a scene in the TV series Grace and Frankie
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine