A crisis meeting of the England squad in Melbourne set in motion a trail of events which culminated in Kevin Pietersen having a showdown with Andy Flower that sealed his fate as an international cricketer, reported Telegraph.
According to reports, Alastair Cook and Matt Prior, the captain and vice-captain, called an emergency meeting of the players on December 30, which should have been the fifth day of the fourth Test, without the knowledge of the coaching staff.
At the meeting it is understood that KP, started an anti-Flower rant. He misjudged the point the other players were trying to make, believing they were accusing the head coach. Pietersen was told at the meeting that it was not a witch-hunt against Flower, a coach who had fallen out with him five years before during the Peter Moores sacking in January 2009, but that players had to take on more responsibility for their actions.
Later, Flower get to know about the meeting and confronted Pietersen, which is when the whole situation, and simmering tension on a losing tour, blew up. This all happened around the same time Paul Downton linked up with the squad for the first time in Sydney on New Year's Eve.
Then Downton met Flower for his tour debrief this row helped to harden attitudes against Pietersen. The previously neutral Downton then held discussion with senior players in Australia, the coaching staff and Cook before sacking Pietersen this week.