Cricinfo has a rather disturbing news item about Michael Slater's upcoming autobiography. Apparently in the book he blames Waugh and Gilchrist for being dropped from the Australian side.
If the cricinfo article is correct (and I hope it isn't), it appears as though Waugh originally attacked Slater for being "disorganized" and "more interested in commentary (work)". Once he was dropped, Slater asserts that the real reason was based upon his marriage breakdown and subsequent divorce.
That's right - Slater was dropped because he and his wife broke up.
My memory of the incident is rather clear. Slater started the 2001 Ashes series with a wonderful 77 off 82 balls at Edgbaston. After that, the runs dried up. After 4 Tests he had scored 170 runs at 24.28 - that's 170 runs more than what I would have scored, but not enough to justify his place in the Team. Justin Langer replaced him and the rest is history.
Marriage problems led him to be dropped? On that basis alone Shane Warne should have been dumped at least 10 years ago. The reason why he was dropped was pure and simple - he was not scoring enough runs.
I will always remember Michael Slater as an exciting batsman whose personal life was a struggle. I'm hoping that someone has misread his new book in making this report. If what I have described is part of his book, then there will be tears....
From the One Salient Sporting Life Department