Michael Vaughan steps down as England captain

August 3rd, 2008 - 10:39 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Aug 3 (IANS) A tearful Michael Vaughan Sunday stepped down as England’s captain, after his team’s Test-series loss to South Africa at home. Vaughan, thus, brought the curtains down to a five-year reign during which he won 26 matches, more than any of his predecessors; a decision he felt would prolong his injury-ridden career.

“It is the hardest decision but also the easiest decision I’ve ever had to make. It is hard to give away a job you have loved for five years and put my heart and soul into. But it is easy decision because my mind told me to pack it in. I felt if I continued as captain, my career would have come to an abrupt end,” Daily Telegraph quoted Vaughan as saying.

“I gave it all I could give. I wish I could have had one more stab at Australia but I’ve had five unbelievable years, played in some exciting games and unbelievable series. I’ve lost matches, won matches and felt all the emotions, but it is right time to move forward now as captain,” an emotional Vaughan said.

Vaughan captained England in 52 Test matches and will always be remembered for the momentous Ashes series win over Australia in 2005.

Vaughan will take a break from the game and has made himself unavailable for this week’s final Test against South Africa at The Oval. But he vowed to carry on as a batsman.

Vaughan’s captaincy career was blighted by injury and a string of knee operations forced him out of the Test side for 18 months.

He returned last year after England’s whitewash in Australia but he resigned from the one-day captaincy after England’s abject World Cup campaign in the Caribbean.

England’s Test record since his return has been patchy and Vaughan’s own form has declined - he scored just 40 runs in four Tests against South Africa this summer.

With Paul Collingwood also standing down as one-day captain, Kevin Pietersen is likely to be named England’s Test and limited overs skipper.

On the decision over the new captain, England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), managing director Hugh Morris said: “The selection committee is currently considering the squad and captain for the fourth Test and Natwest series. These squads, along with the captain, will be announced tomorrow.”

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