The Queenstown effect: Andy Flower defends England players amid criticism
England cricket team take part in adventure activities while on tour in New Zealand
The lovely place that is Queenstown on the south island of New Zealand appears to have an effect on English sportsmen. Barely has the storm abated after the visit of England’s rugby union players to the delightful haunt than the England cricket coach defended his players for behaviour of which they were not guilty.
What the rugby team indulged in during the last World Cup is already the stuff of touring legend. So far as anyone can tell, apart perhaps from an occasional glass or two of sauvignon blanc, all that the cricketers did in their spare time was play golf and in two or three cases spend time on adventure activities short of bungee jumping and certainly not involving dwarf throwing.
But their sojourn has gone down badly with some pundits who were not present in the town for the warm-up match but seem to think the players were shirking. Andy Flower, who puts up with no nonsense, felt moved to speak without being asked about it today.
He said: "There has been a little bit of criticism about a holiday camp the time we had in Queenstown. I think that's incorrect because I encourage the guys to go out and experience the different cultures we are lucky enough to immerse ourselves in on tour and have these different experiences that are really exciting."
Flower has a point. England have spent a great deal of time in sub-continental venues lately where it is difficult to go out not least because of the fear of being mobbed and the difficulties of getting around. But if the players could perhaps do more, no sooner do they go out in places like New Zealand than they are berated.
"We encourage guys to have outside interests and we don't want them to sit in hotels spending repetitive hours on the internet or watching movies or slobbing around," said Flower. "We want them to get out and be active and be interested in the world around them." By raising the issue of course he was drawing attention to it. It may stop any further discussion about England making Queenstown their training base during the 2015 World Cup.
Video: It is the type of thing no parent wants to hear
Phil Hughes dead: List of players who have tragically died on the cricket pitch
Nani transfer: No future for winger at Sporting Lisbon as club cannot afford his wages when loan deal with Manchester United runs out
This letter from a reader explains why women can’t play football
Phillip Hughes death: UK company Masuri say Australian opener was wearing 'outdated helmet'
Tottenham Hotspur vs Partizan Belgrade match report: Spurs go through in Europa League - but pitch invaders grab the attention
- 1 Exodus Gods and Kings casting controversy: Ridley Scott would never cast 'Mohammad so-and-so from such-and-such' in lead role
- 2 This letter from a reader explains why women can’t play football
- 3 'You should come to my house and eat cheeses with me': 4-year-old sends adorable love letter to girl at school
- 4 Scientists predict green energy revolution after incredible new graphene discoveries
- 5 Michael Buerk wishes he killed Jimmy Savile when he had the chance - by pushing him overboard a cruise ship
Ukip says babies born to immigrants in the UK should be classed as migrants – which would include Nigel Farage’s own children
Obama: The only people with the right to object to immigration are Native Americans
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
Ukip mocked after mistaking Westminster Cathedral – for a mosque
Sarah Vine criticises lesbian mother Jack Monroe: 'If she was unsure about her sexuality, she should have taken greater precautions'