Key Points:

Kevin Pietersen's demise as England cricket captain, alongside the sacking of coach Peter Moores, highlights the fact that finally - finally - New Zealand Cricket might have done something right.

English cricket's night of the long knives saw Pietersen step down as captain before he was pushed.

His public spat with Moores means that England, not long before its all-important quest to regain the Ashes, look about as menacing as a melted marshmallow.

Yet there are enough parallels between the captain-coach changeover in New Zealand and England cricket to invite comparisons.

Especially with the coaching.

In England, the naked, throbbing ego that is Kevin Pietersen looked at Moores and saw a cricketer who had not scaled anywhere near the heights Pietersen had. This, in the black-and-white contours of Pietersen-land, meant he could not respect the coach, in spite of the fact many international coaches are far, far better coaches than they were players. Star players often do not make good coaches - something true in all sport, although there are always one or two who buck the trend.

Similarly, new Black Caps coach Andy Moles has had minimal international experience as coach or player. Skipper Daniel Vettori, making his way up the list of the most prolific all-rounders in the game, could have been forgiven if he had looked at Moles and wondered about his credentials.

Especially compared to the outgoing John Bracewell, about whom Vettori was moved to say supportive words.

Bracewell had been a test cricketer of note and, regardless of what else could be said about his coaching, was always primed with a competitive fire respected by his team-mates and charges - no matter whether they agreed with him or not.

But Moles appears to have been a good antidote to the loop-de-loop theoretical spaghetti of the Bracewell era and, so far at least, seems to be a sensible man who is sensibly addressing the shortcomings of the team he has inherited.

Time will tell when it comes to assessing what he has brought to the team but, in a recent column, I maintained the Black Caps needed an attitude transplant. On the evidence of recent outings, that seems to be progressing well enough.

Much of that is down to Vettori, who has managed the transition well. Who knows what he really thinks of Bracewell? Or Moles? That is as it should be. Keeping your powder dry is an important part of fostering team unity and man management.

The captain-coach fulcrum is vital for any cricket team. A recent talkback programme debated whether captain or coach should be in charge of a cricket team after the Pietersen-Moores dispute. They missed the point. Captain and coach have to work together. If they don't, neither does the team.

A cricket team is a strange beast, requiring team effort but which wins or loses (or draws) dependent on a series of one-on-one clashes; so that individuals can consistently affect outcomes and grow an outsize influence within the team. That means that cricket, perhaps more than any other major sport, harbours factions, backbiting and ego aplenty within a single team structure. Managing that ebb and flow of human frailty and self-interest is the biggest challenge facing a captain and/or coach.

Pietersen was always going to be a risk as England captain. Like many great players, he has a unswerving, unalterable self-belief. Arrogance, some might say. Few players could have taken on Brett Lee in a hooking duel, as he did in England's memorable Ashes victory in 2005, scoring a blazing 158 to secure a draw and the series in one of the most unforgettable innings of recent test cricket. He also won his first test, gained many plus-marks on the bomb-scarred tour of India and scored two hundreds in his three tests in charge, suggesting he could cope with the pressure of performance plus leadership.

But that same self-focus so necessary as a player can be a drawback as a leader. The gifted tend not to understand why mere mortals can't do things the way the gifted can or want.

Pietersen also has a dubious record when it comes to getting his way. He left South Africa because his path to the national team was blocked by his country's embrace of 'transition' - allowing coloured players to progress. Pietersen spat the dummy and left.

He went to Nottinghamshire where mentor Clive Rice ran the show. After Rice left, Pietersen immediately fell out with the county. He spat the dummy and left for Hampshire. When he became an England cricketer, he fell out with Moores. More spitting and dummy propulsion. Anyone else seeing a pattern here?

Pietersen's public spat with Moores was naive and unrealistic but also honest. As is often the way of people of such ego, they are not quite able to comprehend why such honesty about someone else's lack of worth is perceived as arrogant.

If Vettori ever felt moved to move against Moles - and there is no intention to create the impression he would; this is merely an example - he would likely do it behind the scenes and in consultation with NZC; quietly, professionally.

Pietersen did it as if he was the Great God Kevin of cricket (all bow...) and his move to ditch Moores and replace him with a coach of his choice would have set the enormous precedent of an employee choosing his boss - something English cricket viewed about as enthusiastically as naked pole dancing on the pitch at Lord's between innings.

That is partly why Pietersen lost the support of team-mates who, apparently, were not that happy with Moores but did not want to deal with it in the way Pietersen did.

All of which means that new England captain Andrew Strauss has a terrible baptism on the upcoming tour of the West Indies. Pietersen is continuing as a batsman and Strauss has to keep Pietersen's ego riding high while he rubs shoulders with the team-mates who didn't support him.

Good luck with that particular waltz, Mr Strauss.