Vaughan aware of Test pressure

Last updated at 17:02 10 May 2008

Michael Vaughan admits he is heading into the 2008 international summer under pressure to justify his Test place.

England's Test captain, and most successful in history, had a poor tour of New Zealand with the bat and needs some significant scores against the same opposition to quell disquiet over his form.

Michael Vaughan disappointed

Under pressure: Michael Vaughan

The 33-year-old goes into the three-match npower series without even a half-century this season, having mustered only 135 runs in seven innings for Yorkshire.

"I am under pressure - that is the position I am in because I didn't score runs in a series in New Zealand," Vaughan said.

"Over the last year, in the 12 Tests I've played, I think I have averaged 43 with two hundreds.

"But you're always remembered for your last series and I didn't have a good last series."

Vaughan looked a poor imitation of the man who has 17 Test hundreds to his name at his lowest point of the winter - ironically the team's high - in Napier, when he lost trust in his ability to react to the ball and succumbed pre-meditating shots.

Further failures next week at Lord's - the scene of five of his England hundreds - would add weight to those around the shires who dare suggest the side needs a new captain.

But Vaughan declared: "I don't give a damn what anyone says about that. What will be will be.

"I am doing it to the best of my ability and trying to build a team to compete with the best teams in the world.

"We have just won a very good series in New Zealand - there are not many times England have come back from 1-0 away from home and won.

"There are a lot of players out there who could be playing Test match cricket and that makes it very competitive.

"That is the pressure I am under - I have to deliver runs because of those knocking on the door to get into the team as a batsman.

"As for the captaincy, I have always said that I will be a better captain the longer I go because of the experience of the situations you are put in.

"I will probably be best when I am about 45, sat in my armchair at home."

Ironically, given his batting malaise, Vaughan feels as good physically as he has for years, less than 12 months after giving up one-day internationals in a bid to prolong his Test life.

"I couldn't see myself captaining right through to the next World Cup," added Vaughan, who did not play for England at all in 2006 due to injury.

"That would have been eight or nine years in the job, doing both forms, and that is a lot of time.

"I have a knee that needs managing: playing for Yorkshire is hard but I get opportunities to go and work in the gym and make sure the leg stays in good condition.

"I feel as fit as I ever have done and who is to say if that continues and I get myself in a run of form like I know I can, I might give myself an opportunity of getting back in the one-day game - because the knee is starting to feel as good as it has done for a long while.

"I enjoy waking up in the morning not having to knock on the physio's door.

"That has probably only been the case for the last three months. The last nine months of 2007 I was always knocking on the physio's door and having injections."

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