Tim Bresnan plays dumb over Kevin Pietersen but gives backing to Jonny Bairstow

Fellow Yorkshireman is great replacement, insists all-rounder, as Pietersen text saga apparently completely passes him by

England began life without you know who yesterday. If the first day was anything to go by it might yet be fine and dandy. Of course, the text messenger known as Kevin Pietersen pervaded everything they did and accompanied them wherever they went.

He might not have been there after being dropped for the crucial third Test against South Africa – though odds were said to be shortening on him turning up in a hospitality box with his biggest fan, chat-show host Piers Morgan – but that mattered not.

To their credit, England knew this, which is why they might have asked the bluff Yorkshire all-rounder, Tim Bresnan, who may not even play in the match which starts tomorrow, to explain how things are. Bresnan, you see, knows nowt.

He admitted as much at the outset. "I try not to get caught up in any of the press, I don't read any of the papers so I think that's why I probably got picked for this press conference. I am quite naive to what's gone on and what's happened over the past week so if you ask me anyway I probably won't know." He wore his ingenuousness almost as a badge of pride, as other Yorkshire folk are wearing Olympic medals.

But "Bressie-lad" had a view on the team's chances minus their biggest star. Pietersen was omitted from the match with his entire international future uncertain after refusing either to refute or apologise for text messages he is said to have sent South Africa players during the second Test at Headingley. It is being widely supposed that an apology even at this late stage might salvage his international career in time for the announcement of the World Twenty20 squad on Saturday. But then he had a chance for contrition before this Test and declined it, so there might be an element of artificiality and convenience on all sides if one were forthcoming in the next few days.

Asked whether England could win the Test at Lord's to level the series, Bresnan was Yorkshire to a T. "Most definitely," he said. "I think at the end of the day we have a squad so deep in talent it doesn't matter who plays. If we play our best cricket on that given day we can beat anyone. It shows you what's happened in the one-dayers – we're unbeaten without certain individuals in the side." He had only one certain individual in mind.

There was agreement with the selectors in taking their decision. "Obviously he's said something or done something," said Bresnan. "I don't know what that is, you guys know more than me, but if they feel they need to take that action then I back them 100 per cent."

But there was also a readiness to see Pietersen return in future. "Personally I've got no problem with Kevin so yeah, if everyone a lot higher up the pecking order than me says it's deemed OK for him to come back and play that's fine by me," he said. "It's the same welcome he'll get as Jonny Bairstow got yesterday and 'Titch' Taylor got last week. It doesn't change because of who he is or what he's done, he's still an England player."

This should have pleased Pietersen, who said in the immediate aftermath of the Leeds match that there were dressing-room issues to sort out. Bresnan, for one, did not feel some players had a problem with Pietersen and to hear their infrequent public pronouncements in the past few days, it is as if they were life members of his fan club. "I was very surprised when he said those things in his press conference at the end of the Leeds game and I think a few of the other lads were as surprised as I was," said Bresnan. "I didn't feel anything had changed inside the dressing room, there was no bickering, no fighting, there was nothing. It was quite surprising."

It has transpired that the spoof Twitter account to which Pietersen apparently took exception was run by a friend of England fast bowler Stuart Broad. But an ECB statement last night categorically cleared Broad of any involement with the account. It even emerged that Pietersen followed the account and retweeted messages.

It may seem ridiculous that England cricket teams are being guided and selected by a combination of social networking sites. But Bresnan rose above it all. He was quite sure that his fellow Yorkshireman, Bairstow, would be a more than adequate replacement for Pietersen. "I don't think he'll care who's been dropped, who he's replaced, it's a chance for him to impress everyone, a chance for him to play in a Test match and a chance for him to show exactly what he can do and show how talented he is."

Yes but what about playing an innings of the sort that Pietersen played in Leeds when he scored a bravura 149. "Yeah, from a spectator's point of view he's phenomenal to watch but I've seen Matt Prior play like that, I've seen Jonny play like it and I've certainly seen 'Titch' play like that this year so who knows? I could go out there and play like that. I might give it a go. It might be the secret!" They might welcome him back but they are prepared to move on.

Related article from London's Evening Standard...

Andrew Strauss has more to think about than his 100th Test

Get Adobe Flash player

 



News
Shoppers at Selfridges department store in central London
news

News
Jeremy Paxman has admitted he is a 'one-nation Tory' and complained that Newsnight is made by idealistic '13-year-olds' who foolishly think they can 'change the world'.
peopleFormer Newsnight presenter is being touted for a brand new role
News
Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
people
Voices
File: David Cameron offers a toast during a State Dinner in his honour March 14, 2012
voicesAnd nobody from Ukip said babies born to migrants should be classed as migrants, says Nigel Farage
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Avatar grossed $2.8bn at the box office after its release in 2009
filmJames Cameron is excited
Arts and Entertainment
Stik on the crane as he completed the mural
art
News
Happy in his hat: Pharrell Williams
people
Arts and Entertainment
Stella Gibson is getting closer to catching her killer
tvReview: It's gripping edge-of-the-seat drama, so a curveball can be forgiven at such a late stage
News
Brazilian football legend Pele pictured in 2011
peopleFans had feared the worst when it was announced the Brazil legand was in a 'special care' unit
News
i100(More than you think)
Sport
Brendan Rodgers seems more stressed than ever before as Liverpool manager
FOOTBALLI like Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
News
The Magna Carta
archaeologyContemporary account of historic signing discovered
News
Phyllis Dorothy James on stage during a reading of her book 'Death Comes to Pemberley' last year
peopleJohn Walsh pays tribute to PD James, who died today
Sport
Benjamin Stambouli celebrates his goal for Tottenham last night
FOOTBALL
Life and Style
Dishing it out: the head chef in ‘Ratatouille’
food + drinkShould UK restaurants follow suit?
News
peopleExclusive: Maryum and Hana Ali share their stories of the family man behind the boxing gloves
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game