Friday, 13 May 2011

Morris and Brown - the story breaks

My early morning radio interview today changed somewhat with the earlier revelations by Luke Sutton that John Morris had indeed ‘lost’ the Derbyshire dressing room and that the feelings of the players towards him were ‘overwhelmingly negative.’

As those who have been reading this blog since I started three years ago will know, I have always been a fan of Morris and I maintain that he brought a better quality of player to the club than we had seen for some time. I also feel that he has started the ball rolling and the next incumbent of the post may well reap the benefits of his work with an improved relationship with players and further recruitment.

John was always honest, sometimes brutally so, and as a man was very much in the ‘Marmite’ category, the sort of bloke you either loved or disliked. From today’s revelations it would appear the players were generally in the latter category, which made further contract negotiations pointless. That being the case, the recent excellent form has been especially worthy, as they have done it despite strong feelings to the fore.

What I find surprising is the concern expressed in some quarters over the departures leaving us in the lurch, which is far from the case. In Karl Krikken, a man very popular in the club, we have a Level 4 coach (the highest possible) who will keep things on an even keel for the rest of the season, hopefully making a case in that period for retaining the post on a permanent basis. He has able assistance from Steffan Jones, while James Pipe, the physiotherapist, is capable of helping out if required. With a fitness and conditioning coach in the mix too, the loss of a couple of people hardly leaves us short.

As one would expect from a man with his business background, Chris Grant has done a ‘roots and branches’ look at the club and perhaps felt himself that we were top heavy on that side. Just my opinion, of course, but when finances are tight it can come down to a decision on a coaching post or a player. What would you sooner have?

Nor does it leave the Academy short. In Howard Dytham we have another Level 4 coach who has a great rapport with young players and will do an excellent job for as long as required. Meanwhile Andy Harris has made a very good early impression with the Seconds, who looked set to win a second successive game today.

What I have found strange is the suggestion, voiced by Radio Derby’s Charles Collins among others, that Tony Borrington was likely to make a play for the leading role, which is utter nonsense. I think the idea emanates from the clumsily worded press release that suggested his involvement on the playing side, when his role, as I said last night, will continue to be as the link man between the committee and playing side. For a former player it is a logical role.

I spent a pleasant half hour chatting to Tony recently at Derby and he is winding down from a successful career in private education, now working part-time so that he can watch more cricket, primarily his son at whatever level he plays. At 62 he is hardly likely to decide to embark on a coaching career.

Late last night I also realised that I had been unfair to the committee. Having donned my deerstalker and re-read the chain of events it became patently clear to me that there could have been little, if any committee involvement. They meet on a monthly basis and would not have deliberately chosen the middle of a match nearly four weeks hence to break the news. While the timing was unfortunate, it happened. End of story.

It remains unfortunate, especially from a public relations perspective. The legalities will take some time but we will move forward as a club and come out stronger on the other side. Luke Sutton’s assertions on Twitter last night and in the media today have confirmed that the players, committee, coaches and chairman are together, which is good enough for me.

So in closing, a final thanks to John Morris and Andy Brown from me for their efforts over four years. It didn’t end satisfactorily, but they did take the club forward. The genesis of any future success could well have been in the John Morris era.

We should all remember that. But this is the Krikken show now.

Good luck Karl, and congratulations on the new role.

PS If anyone heard the interview this morning, I hope you didn't get the five second blast of Supertramp that I got in my headphones from somewhere when I was talking about the new coaches. I thought the connection had gone, so if I sounded slightly baffled when I was talking about Howard....er.....Howard in the Academy, that was why!

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Golly! My first (and lengthy) post on this blog turned out to be illl-informed and premature. Peakfan is rightly critical of those who make negative comments and then disappear so all I can do is hold my hands up: I got it wrong.

There seems no reason to doubt what sutton gas said. If the dressing room was united against Morris then there was no other option. One can only hope things get better from here on.

Spireite Tim

Peakfan said...

Respect Tim. First to come on here and say they got it wrong.
Agree with you mate. Onwards and upwards eh?

Anonymous said...

So if someone in the office says they don't like Keith Loring do we sack Keith aswell?

Anonymous said...

If the chairman has got a lot of money then he needs to buy a place on a PR course for himself.

Anonymous said...

Yes, surely as captain Sutton was the go between between the players and manager and the problem should have been sorted in the changing room without 'blabbing' to the chairman by the players.

Anonymous said...

I can't beleive ALL of the players, as Sutton states, had a problem with the manager. Durston was only singing John's praises recently. In 40 years of watching Derbyshire I have never seen such a great team spirit.

Anonymous said...

Its funny that the players didn't seem to have a problem with John Morris until Sutton and Grant came along.

Anonymous said...

Its not just about John Morris. Andy Brown has been a great servant to the club for many years and a rich boy, who has had no previous involvement in professional sport, comes along and sacks him on a whim. its a DISGRACE.

Anonymous said...

The clubs silence on the Morris / Brown sag is also a disgrace! If the club have nothing to hide then they should put the minutes from the recent Committee Meeting on the Official Website.

Anonymous said...

Maybee the 'Honoury Secretary' can't type.

Anonymous said...

The facts are that Derbyshire have no money and Grant has lots. He sacked Morris and Brown so I hope he is going to pay them the compensation out of his own pocket.

Anonymous said...

As a member I want to vote for an EGM. How do I go about it?

Marc H said...

Whether you were pro or anti John Morris,or sitting on the fence is irrelevant now. He,s departed the scene and what happens in the future is all that matters from now on. I dont wish to go over ground i covered in the now missing blogs, which may return,only to say i am satisfied the Chairman and committee seem to have actually done their jobs and consulted relevant personnel over the future of Morris. I am a little uncomfortable with this apparent upsurge in player power,something we witness more and more in this day and age, but as peakfan rightly says,there was no point in offering Morris a new contract with so much hostility surrounding him. As you know,he wouldn,t have been getting one anyway had the decision rested with me,but that was based purely on cricketing matters alone. Anyway,whichever side of the fence people were on before is irrelevant now. A new era dawns and we must look forwards. Whilst the current arrangements for looking after the team will probably remain in place for the remainder of the season, we need someone to take full control in the future. Preferably an outsider with no previous connections to the club. A fresh pair of eyes,so to speak. It would be useful if that person was fully conversent in county cricket and has good contacts within the game. Someone by the name of Ramprakash might be a thought. He,s young,in touch,intelligent and would no doubt bring some fresh ideas to the club. As i say,just a thought. No offence to Tony Borrington but considering him beyond this season would be bordering on insanity. Anyway,in the meantime,lets hope we can continue this run of improved results. There are still too many players misfiring too often for my liking, but, we have improved as a team and i hope this trend continues.

Anonymous said...

As a former player. John never had the dressing and his bullish approach and man managing skills are dreadful.

Marc H said...

Mmmmmm....If you are a former player it would be interesting if you could elaborate further on your time under John Morris. Im not suggesting you give up your annonimity but someone with first hand experience might be able to shed some light on the real dressing room.

Peakfan said...

Just to say that Tony B is not and will not be involved on the playing side.
Also be careful with any personal comments and/or accusations. A former player could be just that, but anyone could equally write that!

Marc H said...

Agreed. It could be anyone which was why i suggested they be a little more specific.

Marc H said...

Agreed. It could be anyone which was why i suggested they be a little more specific.