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South Africa v England
Barbados, 17 April 2007

Test Match Special podcast | Blog

By Martin Gough
BBC Sport, Bridgetown, Barbados

Michael Vaughan faces the media
Vaughan's captaincy and batting have been criticised
Captain Michael Vaughan says he will not retire from one-day cricket despite seeing England exit the World Cup after a nine-wicket loss to South Africa.

But he accepts that both he and coach Duncan Fletcher could lose their jobs.

He said: "I'm an honest guy who says my position is hugely in doubt due to my batting. But I still believe I'm a very good captain - I'm not retiring."

Vaughan also defended Fletcher, saying he was an "outstanding coach" who still had a "tremendous amount to offer".

Vaughan, 32, has scored just 130 runs in nine innings at the World Cup and has yet to score a one-day century.

And under his leadership, England have beaten just one Test side in the Caribbean - Bangladesh.

That statistic reflects badly on Fletcher, too.

Appointed in 2000, the Zimbabwean-born coach has guided England to second in the Test rankings but has come under increasing fire following the winter's Ashes debacle, when his side were whitewashed 5-0 by the Australians.

Now England's World Cup demise will only increase the pressure on him to step down.


"It's a massive tournament, in which I expected us to turn up and produce something," said Vaughan following the loss to South Africa.

"I firmly believe that we have players with the talent and the attitude to do that on the big stage.

"We haven't done that so we have to accept all the criticism that comes our way. It's a very sad day for English cricket.

"We have to make sure we analyse what has gone wrong in the World Cup. It's been a poor winter for us overall."

England were booed off the field in Barbados after the crushing defeat at the Kensington Oval, and Vaughan said his team deserved to be barracked.

"It's a horrible feeling to have walked off the field and get booed by a lot of England supporters, but rightfully so from the performance we put in," he said.

It's a very sad day for English cricket

Michael Vaughan

"I've been a supporter in a stadium, watched football teams that haven't produced, and done exactly the same.

"I fully understand why they have given us that kind of reception. But full credit to South Africa. They deserve their semi-final spot."

Andrew Hall was South Africa's leading bowler, taking 5-18, including four in the space of five overs of reverse swing while England added just 10 runs.

But Vaughan said: "We knew exactly what Andrew Hall was going to produce. We know a lot about the South African attack.

"We have faced that kind of bowling before so that's no excuse. Players just didn't adapt well enough."

Vaughan defended the decision to bat first at the Kensington Oval despite there being more swing and seam movement in the morning.

He said: "It was always going to be a tricky decision but we just felt that by getting runs on the board the chasing team would struggle.

"If we had got 220 or 240 on the board we would have put pressure on South Africa.

"But through some poor batting and some excellent bowling from them we weren't able to do that. The batting is the real area we have to work on."

England pay for poor preparation
17 Apr 07 |  England
Cricket World Cup 2007 schedule
20 Jul 05 |  Cricket


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