Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Vaughan Forced out by New Injury Fears

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Vaughan Forced out by New Injury Fears

Article excerpt


BY DAVID LLOYD Cricket Correspondent, in Baroda

MICHAEL VAUGHAN could not have been much more upbeat about his fitness on the eve of England's departure for India.

But the one note of caution he struck at Heathrow less than a fortnight ago sounded especially relevant today.

"Until you've played a game it's hard to comment," said Vaughan when asked about the fragile right knee which curtailed his tour of Pakistan and now threatens to ruin this trip.

"But I'm very positive about it," he added before boarding the plane for Mumbai 11 days ago.

"The knee feels as good as it has done for a long time, so I don't see it being a problem."

Worryingly, the "problem" has returned to haunt the England captain and his team straight after the opening match of this campaign.

Instead of leading the side into today's final warm-up contest before next Wednesday's First Test, Vaughan was forced to watch from the pavilion, and hope the discomfort in his knee is nothing worse than a minor reaction to putting it under pressure again.

"Michael has had a recurrence of the knee problem that troubled him in Pakistan," said England spokesman Andrew Walpole as Marcus Trescothick assumed the now familiar role of acting captain, this time against a strong President's XI "He has been experiencing soreness in his right knee since the first practice match.

"This has gradually got worse and it was decided to rule him out of this match as a precaution. Michael will continue to have treatment and we remain hopeful he will be fit for the First Test."

Three months ago, Vaughan crumpled in a heap while running between wickets during the final practice match in Pakistan.

He missed the opening Test, managed to battle through the next two without ever being fully mobile but then returned home for a keyhole operation in early December while England played five one-day internationals. …

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