The prime minister was waxing lyrical about ousted England slogger Kevin Pietersen when speaking to BBC Lancashire earlier today. The PM confessed that he is ‘an enormous fan of KP.’ And added: ‘Some of my most enjoyable times have been watching him tonking the ball all over the park.’
Some members of the media pack have been giving the PM flak for this intervention; but Mr S is willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. Cameron has been mocked for his dubious love of Aston Villa in the past, but he clearly knew what he was talking about this time:
‘A really great moment for me was – he scored a century for England against India and I was allowed to go into the dressing room with the players – they are allowed to have a beer when they score a century – so I gave him and Ian Bell their celebratory beers. It was a proud moment for me. He’s an amazing man.’
The Sports Minister can barely name a football team, so it was refreshing to hear a politician actually express a considered opinion on a sporting matter.
But, it was all too good to last. Realising that he was on a sticky wicket, or perhaps because he was getting a death stare from an aide, the PM quickly reverted to type:
‘Look, I don’t pick the England team. His average is remarkable. It is not often I have sympathy for Piers Morgan, but I thought he was making quite a powerful argument this morning on my radio. But I will let the England selectors pick the England team. I think I had better stay out of this one.’
As you were, Dave. What is the country coming to when the prime minister is castigated for expressing a view about cricket? He’s not wrong either. KP might not be the best role model for a team building exercise; but at least he’s got some balls.
Subscribe to The Spectator today for a quality of argument not found in any other publication. Get more Spectator for less – just £12 for 12 issues.