Pietersen blasts Jonny Bairstow for sledge-turned-friendly chat with Steve Smith
Kevin Pietersen was at it again. After a passionate rant against England players' overly kind and friendly attitude against their Ashes rivals Australia, the former middle-order giant felt annoyed over a conversation he heard between Jonny Bairstow and Steve Smith.
The conversation began as a sledge directed by England's leading wicketkeeper towards the Aussie batting great but turned into a friendly banter thereafter. Bairstow initially took a jibe at Smith's longstanding antics with the bat by insisting he would good to go for a dance show.
But since Smith couldn't easily pick out what Bairstow meant, the cricketer amusingly queried about the reference and they both shared a laugh with each other, something Pietersen, doing commentary and broadcasting work for Sky Sports in the Ashes, found distasteful and unfitting to the rivalry.
Pietersen not amused with Bairstow-Smith friendly banter
The chat between Smith and Bairstow came to light after the modern-day legend left a delivery outside off from James Anderson on the critical Day 3 of the Lord's Test and did an unusual shuffle as he readjusted his stance.
Bairstow, then, got into his act and said: "I reckon you’re the next on Strictly Australia". The reference was to the famous dance show 'Dancing With the Stars'. But Smith, so focused on playing the next ball, couldn't pick it up instantly.
So he asked Bairstow, "What's That?"
"Bit of dancing for you," Bairstow responded.
"Wouldn’t have thought so," said Smith to conclude the conversation before they laughed.
Watching it from the commentary box, Pietersen wasn't one bit amused, however, by the friendly nature of the conversation after Bairstow's strange attempt at sledging the Aussie veteran. Pietersen said the vibe between England and Australian players was difference when he was playing the Ashes contests.
"Now it’s one thing walking in, swanning around saying ‘this is a wonderful team to play in, we’re creating the best environment’," he said. "But this is not Ashes cricket. I’ve played Ashes cricket. I’ve played 30 matches against Australia."
"The Australians here were outside to bat before the English bowlers. The English bowlers this morning should have been on those stairs saying ‘we want to bowl at Australia, we’re desperate to bowl at Australia’. These two Australian batters are out there waiting for England," Pietersen added.