Wicketkeeper satisfied with batting contribution January 31, 2007

'I showed what I'm capable of' - Nixon

AFP



Feeling better: Paul Nixon struck 49 against New Zealand at the WACA on Tuesday night © Getty Images

After posting the highest score of his brief international career, Paul Nixon, the England wicketkeeper, feels like he has finally gone part of the way towards silencing the critics. Nixon, who is playing his first one-day series, had only 34 runs at 6.80 before Tuesday's match with New Zealand, but he made 49 to ensure his side did not concede a bonus point and eased the pressure on his own spot.

Although happy with his glovework, Nixon conceded his form with the bat before Tuesday had not been good enough. "I've kept wicket beautifully all trip," he said. "I've felt I've done the job behind the stumps, but I've under-performed with the bat.

"I am pleased that the management stuck by me and gave me another game and it was nice to repay the faith. Last night I showed what I am capable of and what I have been doing in county cricket for 19 years now. It's very pleasing."

Nixon put his belated introduction to the international game down to the dominant presence of Alec Stewart and Jack Russell in England teams. His current aim is to secure a berth at the World Cup, starting in the West Indies in March.

"It's a boyhood dream," he said. "The World Cup is a huge dream and a huge honour and if I am picked for England I will be delighted."

Nixon has attracted plenty of attention for his vocal approach on the field and he has also stepped outside party lines by saying England's fielding during the CB Series has been "slightly under par". "We've had a lot of fielding sessions, we've worked very hard on our fielding and gone through everything," he said. "But nothing is the same as the intensity of the game.

"There are a lot of young lads in the side that have been thrown into the cauldron. They need to learn from that, and we have to make sure we lift our standards every game."

England dropped two catches and several boundaries came as a result of fielding mistakes during the 58-run loss to New Zealand. They also conceded 37 sundries, including 22 wides and three no-balls.

Nixon rejected the coach Duncan Fletcher's assessment that the side may have been training too hard. "I don't agree with that," he said. "If I am hitting the ball badly, I get in the nets. It doesn't just happen, I need to get my mindset right."

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