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Updated: October 16, 2011 16:24 IST

KP and Swann are still friends, insists Flower

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Graeme Swann’s criticism of Kevin Pietersen in his autobiography has not affected their friendship, insisted England cricket coach Andy Flower.
AP Graeme Swann’s criticism of Kevin Pietersen in his autobiography has not affected their friendship, insisted England cricket coach Andy Flower.

Graeme Swann’s criticism of Kevin Pietersen in his autobiography has not affected their friendship, insisted England cricket coach Andy Flower but conceded that he would have wanted the off-spinner to wait till retirement before writing such a book.

In his autobiography, Swann had criticised Pietersen’s captaincy stint, saying that he was a bad choice to lead England in 2008 and 2009.

Flower praised Pietersen for his “mature handling” of the situation and hoped that such tell-all books are kept for after the retirement.

Asked whether he believes players should wait until retiring to air such revelations in print, he said: “That’s my personal opinion, yes.”

“I personally don’t think that it’s a good idea for current players to be talking about their fellow players,” Flower was quoted as saying by ‘The Daily Mail’

“The written word does come across very, very differently - when you can’t judge a person’s tone - and particularly with Swann’s words, that is an accurate and important point.”

Flower insisted that England’s team spirit was intact despite the controversy.

“It’s all been handled in-house - without many problems.

Pietersen and Swann get on well, and I think Pietersen has handled it very maturely,” he said.

England, touring India right now, are down 0-1 in a five-match ODI series.

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