Proteas set out damage Poms even further!!

South Africa will set out to regain the number 1 test ranking today when they take on England at the prestigious Lords Cricket Grounds.

Emotions will certainly be running high when both teams take to the pitch as there are so many dynamics at play ahead of this crucial encounter, taking into consideration the Kevin Pietersen debacle and captain Graeme Smith has done utmost best to steer away from getting his side involved in the media frenzy drama trying to focus his side on the task at hand, that is being labelled the Number One test nation.

Smith has said suggestions his side deliberately leaked text messages from Kevin Pietersen are “the biggest load of rubbish I have heard”.

England will go into Thursday’s third test at Lord’s without their star batsman after South Africa-born Pietersen was dropped last weekend, despite scoring 149 in the drawn second test in Leeds, for failing to reveal the contents of those text messages, some of which were said to contain criticisms of England captain Andrew Strauss.

Pietersen apologised on Wednesday for the “provocative” texts but it was too late to win back his place in the team for a match starting Thursday where the tourists only need to avoid defeat to replace England as the world’s No 1 test side.

Clearly, South Africa’s task is easier if England’s leading batsman is not playing but Smith, who has had plenty of run-ins with Pietersen in the past, insisted his team had not initiated the row, although the awkward question of how the texts got into the public arena remains.

Kevin Pietersen scores big at Headingley

“For us to be dragged into this has been disappointing,” Smith said at Lord’s on Wednesday.

“I heard (former England captain) Mike Atherton wrote a column about it saying we did it on purpose. That’s the biggest load of rubbish I have heard – I can’t believe it has got to that point.

“I think the notion that we have tried to ‘nail’ Kevin or put things out in the media is just ridiculous.”

At Present things don’t seem to be going the Proteas way. Currently England have them rattled at 65 for 4 after 24 overs. Let’s hope their pedigree shines through and the recover well.



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