One Of Yorkshire’s Finest Retires

Today saw the confirmation that the most successful England captain of all time, Michael Vaughan, OBE, had decided to retire from all forms of the great game.

This was a slight shock but it had to be expected following his justified omission from the forthcoming ashes series. Averaging under 20 runs per innings this season is simply not good enough.

I believe it is a sign of the man that he has decided to retire when he has and has not gone on for his own gratification, hence been remembered for anything other than his finest achievement.

Speaking honestly at a news conference at Edgbaston he said;

 “I wanted to give it one last effort to get into the Ashes squad. I’ve given it that shot but haven’t been playing well enough, I have not played well enough.

I have not got the rhythm or form to be picked in the Ashes squad. It has to be best 16 players and I am not one of those.

Two weeks ago, I was in the garden with my little lad Archie. He bowled a ball which hit a weed and knocked my off stump out of the ground – and when a three-year-olds bowling you out, it’s time to move over.”

Very honest words I sure you’ll agree and the thoughts of a very down to earth and well liked man. He is a true gentleman and will always be remembered for leading England to victory over the Australians in the Ashes series 2005, a first victory since the 1986/87 Ashes.

One of his finest compliments is that he is one of few Englishman to be revered by the arch enemy, Australia in my generation. Others would include Darren Gough and Andrew Flintoff but not many others.

He was an elegant batsman who stroked the ball with excellent timing and played with a calmness and persona on the field of play and in particularly at the crease that few Englishmen have ever possessed.

As I mentioned he is England’s most successful test captain, winning 26 of his 51 matches as test captain, which included 6 successive series and bringing together of the awesome foursome (Harmison, Hoggard, Jones and Flintoff).

Injuries ruined his later career which would have cemented him as a true great of the game. Knee and hamstring injuries prevented him for playing much cricket in the years prior to this season and this season has seen his game not live upto it’s high standards.

 Click on the link below and listen to Michael, aged 34, talking to Jonathan Agnew from the BBC. A very funny conversation and a sign of a true gentleman http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/cricket/7532521.stm

Check out his Batting and fielding statistics below. Very good batting average at International and first class cricket level. Also a competent right-arm off break bowler, with over 30 International wickets.

  Mat Inns NO Runs HS Ave BF SR 100 50 4s 6s Ct St
Tests 82 147 9 5719 197 41.44 11184 51.13 18 18 742 22 44 0
ODIs 86 83 10 1982 90* 27.15 2898 68.39 0 16 204 13 25 0
T20Is 2 2 0 27 27 13.50 22 122.72 0 0 4 0 0 0
First-class 268 468 27 16295 197 36.95     42 68     118 0
List A 282 273 25 7238 125* 29.18     3 46     88 0
Twenty20 18 18 1 319 41* 18.76 284 112.32 0 0 31 5 2 0

He is one of my all-time favourite cricketers and would make it into my all-time favourite test XI, probably captaining my side. One of Yorkshire’s finest and a true ambassador for the game.

Thanks for the memories Michael.

Good luck with your future ventures. I for one hope you remain in the sport as it will be a great loss without you.

Future England head coach? Who knows.

Thanks for reading and enjoy the sunshine.

Cheers

Gaffers

P.s. Well done to all at the All England Club for the first successful venture of having the roof closed at Wimbledon on Monday evening.

It proved to be a success and despite some minor complaints, this will prove to be a great investment for the sport in England. 

Though I wish people would get over ‘how late they are playing’, do you actually follow the sport?

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