'You can put as much spin on it as you want but it is worrying' May 22, 2006

Boycott concerned over Vaughan's future

Cricinfo staff

'You can put as much spin on it as you want but it is worrying' - Geoff Boycott on Michael Vaughan © Getty Images

Geoff Boycott, the former England and Yorkshire batsman, has expressed his concern over Michael Vaughan's future with England. The England captain continues to struggle with his persistent knee injury, which first forced him out of England's tour of India. He hasn't played since, and has only recently returned to the nets.

"You can put as much spin on it as you want but it is worrying," Boycott wrote in his column for the BBC. "England need him for the Ashes - they need him back now - but they definitely want him in Australia. After all, he was the leader when we won the Ashes back.

"No team likes to lose its leader, that is no reflection on Andrew Flintoff, but you don't want to lose your chief."

On Sunday, David Graveney attempted to allay fears over Vaughan's fitness in an interview with BBC Radio Five Live. "I've seen him batting in the nets so things are going in the right direction," he said. "Michael Vaughan is a crucial part of our team and I haven't had any information to suggest that there's anything dramatic happening."

Yet Boycott is concerned that Graveney's optimism is masking the seriousness of the situation. "No-one wants to write off his career - he's 31 and in his prime so nobody within the framework of the team will want to be negative, and quite rightly so," Boycott said.

As at Lord's, Andrew Flintoff will captain England in Vaughan's absence in the second Test at Edgbaston on Thursday.