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Page last updated at 16:28 GMT, Thursday, 8 January 2009

Rhodes feels for sacked Moores

Steve Rhodes
Rhodes inherited the gauntlets from Peter Moores at New Road

Worcestershire director of cricket Steve Rhodes says he has sympathy for sacked England coach Peter Moores.

Rhodes told BBC Hereford & Worcester: "I feel very sorry for him. He doesn't seem to have done a lot wrong and he's lost the best job in English cricket.

But proud Englishman Rhodes believes that, despite this week's events, the long-term outcome in this Ashes year may still prove to England's benefit.

"I don't share this pessimism about the Ashes being round the corner," he said.

"We've done it now to start afresh and get things going.

"We have some great players in England and we have time to get it right before the Ashes.

"The Aussies haven't got much to shout about as they are in the doldrums at the moment."

Rhodes also suggests that one Australian, his old team-mate Tom Moody might even be in the frame to become Moores' successor.

Tom Moody
Moody has been tipped to replace Peter Moores as England coach

Former New Road favourite Moody, Rhodes' predecessor as Worcestershire coach, is one of the men tipped to become the new England supremo, having also been first seriously linked with the job when Duncan Fletcher left in 2007.

Rhodes says he would be happy with that but says Moody may not want to leave his current job back home in his native Western Australia.

"It's just whether the timing is right for Tom," said Rhodes. "He has a young family and their education is important to him and whether he wants to uproot them from Perth remains to be seen.

"But Tom has loads of experience and I would back him. He has, of course, a lot of English connections and could be the man for the job."

But, for now, Rhodes's sympathies are with fellow former Worcestershire wicket-keeper Moores.

Moores was first-choice keeper prior to Rhodes' initial arrival at New Road as a player in the winter of 1984. And, having played against him and then come up against him as a coach in meetings with Sussex over the years, Rhodes has got to know him well.

"Peter Moores is a very forward-thinking coach," said Rhodes. "He'd certainly wants the best for his players and his teams and all his intentions would be for the right reasons.

"And Kevin is a world-class player. One of the best, if not the best, batsmen in the world.

"There are lessons to be learnt. Kevin Pietersen misread the situation, but I feel sorry for both of them."

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