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Vaughan keen on England captaincy

By Roger Vaughan 22/12/2006 07:54:19 PM Comments (0)

Former English cricket captain Michael Vaughan would love to have the job again, but insists he does not know who will lead the side after the Ashes series.

Vaughan has been named in the squad for the upcoming one-day series against Australia and New Zealand.

He will play in two low-key matches over the next few days and is confident he will be match-fit for the series, which starts on January 12.

Vaughan did not recover in time from knee surgery to be fit for England's ill-fated Ashes defence.

"If it (captaincy) was made available, God, I reckon it's one of the best jobs in the world," he said.

"But I'm sure Freddie (current captain Andrew Flintoff) and Andrew Strauss would be saying exactly the same thing, so it will be a tough decision for them to make."

England is yet to name a captain for the one-dayers and Vaughan said he has "no idea" who will have the job.

"That decision will made, out of my hands, in the next couple of weeks - I've been given no indication of which way they're going to go," he said.

"I'm sure you all think that it's all been made up, but there's still two Tests to go and Freddie has done a decent job in hard circumstances."

Vaughan was careful in his comments about Flintoff and coach Duncan Fletcher, who have received widespread criticism as England lost the first three Tests to lose the Ashes.

He said the whole team needed to accept responsibility for England's performances.

"What we did in 2005 was take collective adulation ... we've lost 3-0, I think a lot of things should be pointed at the whole of the team, not just a couple of individuals," said Vaughan, who led England to last year's Ashes triumph.

Vaughan joked at the start of the media conference that "I'm not retiring", in reference to this week's big news about Shane Warne.

While he joined the chorus of tributes for the leg-spinning genius, Vaughan quipped that he and his team-mates would not miss Warne's "chirping" from first slip.

He also hoped in the remaining two Tests that "we can send Shane with a little bit of a message that `it's hard to play against you, but the last time you played against us, we beat you'.

"That's the motivation for the whole team," Vaughan said.

Vaughan also backed the decision by team-mate Steve Harmison to retire from one dayers after being overlooked for this series.

"It was a surprise - these retirement decisions are purely personal, I respect his decision, I'm sure he's thought long and hard about making that decision.

"He feels it's probably going to prolong his Test career, so you have to respect that."

Vaughan is resigned to spending the rest of his cricket career with knee pain, but is confident he is fit to return to international-level competition.

He came to Australia last month, initially hoping to be fit for the Ashes, but realised that would not happen.

Vaughan said he might play in one of the last two Tests only if the team suffered several injuries.

"It's been quite a long road to get in this position, where I've been made available for the one-day series and obviously been picked," he said.

"It's been quite a tough year....I'm really pleased with the progress over the last few weeks.

"I'm obviously delighted to get the nod to get into the squad again.

"There were always a few little periods when I thought I didn't think I was going to get to represent my country again - there is still a fair way to go before I do that."

Vaughan added he was "bitterly disappointed" at not being available for the Ashes series.

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