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Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 August, 2005, 08:34 GMT 09:34 UK
Vaughan hails England's potential
England captain Michael Vaughan
Vaughan came within a whisker of a second successive victory
England captain Michael Vaughan says his team have limitless potential after dominating a draw against Australia in the third Test at Old Trafford.

The home side fell one wicket short of taking a 2-1 Ashes series lead, but Vaughan drew only on the positives.

"This England team can go as far as it really wants to," he said.

"We have played a very good game and dominated for four days of Test cricket against the best team in the world. It was a fantastic game of cricket."

Vaughan said the performance even exceeded that at Birmingham, where England won by two runs in another thrilling finish.

Freddie Flintoff
Obviously there is disappointment with us getting so close but we can walk off that pitch with our heads held high
Andrew Flintoff

"We were better here than we were at Edgbaston and we dominated the whole match against a very good Australia team to come within a whisker of beating them. We did not lose a session.

"The guys have shown a lot of character - especially the guys under pressure, who've shown they are quality players.

"We have a lot of ability and a lot of young players with a lot of years left, which only bodes well for the future.

"The series is really well poised and we are looking forward to the last two Tests now."

Vaughan now has the task of rejuvenating his exhausted players again for the fourth Test in Nottingham on 25 August.

"There are a few tired bodies," he admitted.

"A lot of the guys have put a hell of a lot of hard work into the two weeks at Edgbaston and here, so we'll have a week off and make sure we come back at Trent Bridge and play another good game."

Andrew Flintoff confirmed that England were a little jaded after just failing to capture the final Australian wicket.

"Obviously there is disappointment with us getting so close but we can walk off with our heads held high," he said.

"We've shown that we can compete with Australia and beat them but next week that will count for nothing and they will come at us hard.

"The last two Tests have been compelling viewing and hopefully the last two will be as well."

Chairman of selectors David Graveney insisted, however, that Old Trafford should not be regarded as a missed opportunity.

He told the BBC: "Initially that's the way people think. But if we reflect on the number of sessions we've dominated in the last two Test matches, we can take that with great confidence to Trent Bridge."

"I've always said if we can get it to The Oval (for the last Test) and the Ashes are still alive, it would be an awesome summer of cricket."

The selectors meet on Friday to discuss the squad for the fourth Test and Graveney hinted that they were unlikely to make changes.

Geraint Jones missed a catch and stumping in Australia's first innings, but redeemed himself with a brilliant effort to dismiss Shane Warne on the final day.

"That outstanding catch is a very vivid memory," Graveney added.

Interview: England captain Michael Vaughan

Interview: Andrew Flintoff

Interview: England chairman of selectors David Graveney


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