England should have managed Kevin Pietersen better to reap the benefits of his match-winning performances rather than exile him, according to former South Africa captain Graeme Smith.
You can't help but look at the World T20 and think he would have added value
Pietersen was jettisoned from the national team after the 5-0 Ashes whitewash in Australia for a perceived lack of team spirit, although neither England nor Pietersen have spelled out the exact reasons for his exit.
England were subsequently dumped out of the World Twenty20 in the group stage, culminating in an embarrassing 45-run defeat to the Netherlands.
Smith, the Surrey captain, said England's leadership should have done more to keep his county team mate in the side and their dismal performance at the WorldT20 showed they had made the wrong decision.
"I was very surprised that Pietersen was dropped," Smith told a news conference at The Oval on Thursday. "I would have thought that the environment could have managed a match-winner like that. In any environment there is a lot of different personalities so you need to manage big personalities. It's part of being a leader.
"You can't help but look at the World T20 and think he would have added value."
Meanwhile, England are without a head coach, with Ashley Giles favourite to succeed Andy Flower despite overseeing the World T20 campaign in Bangladesh. Smith, the most successful Test captain, believes England are in desperate need of new leadership and says questions still remain over test captain Alastair Cook.