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October 31, 2009
The England batsman Jonathan Trott has denied allegations from Michael Vaughan that he partied with South Africa after they won a Test in 2008. In his new autobiography, Time to Declare, Vaughan has accused the Cape Town-born Trott of celebrating with South Africa's players after England lost at Edgbaston last summer.
"It was a sad day for English cricket that on my last day against South Africa I saw Jonathan Trott celebrating with South Africa, when the week before he had been our 12th man at Headingley," wrote Vaughan. "I was going into the press conference and I saw him patting them on the back. It hit home what English cricket has become like."
In response, Trott has said that he was talking to the spinner and his old friend Paul Harris shortly after the Test. "Warwickshire finished a game at Leicester and myself, Neil Carter and Allan Donald raced back to Edgbaston because the Test looked like being a close finish," he said. "We were standing between the changing rooms when both teams were on the field at the end. I've known Paul Harris since I was 16 and we played together at Warwickshire. I just said something like, 'Cheers, well done on your victory.'
"That was it. There was no high-fives or anything like that. I knew I wouldn't be seeing Paul again that summer because he wasn't in the one-day squad so I wanted to wish him well. In fact, I've not seen him since.
"But Michael Vaughan walked past at the same time to go to his press conference. It was a misunderstanding, an unfortunate situation. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
"I respect Michael. I would never behave like that against the team I was trying to play for at the time - and now have the chance to play for. Allan Donald went into the South African changing room but I didn't go anywhere near. In the previous match, I was on 12th-man duty at Headingley and was upset when England lost that match. I was also upset they lost at Edgbaston."
Back in August, Trott was the toast of English cricket after securing the Ashes with a brilliant debut century, at the culmination of a crazy week in which his credentials as an international cricketer were questioned before they had even been tested. Though he triumphed over the critics in unequivocal fashion, Trott has again become the victim of criticism ahead of England's tour to South Africa, one on which he will be under the spotlight given his roots.
Trott, who made his name playing for Warwickshire, has insisted that his commitment to the England cause is complete. "My commitment to England is 100%. I've spent seven years working hard to be able to wear the Three Lions and in that time my allegiance has never wavered. It's unfortunate this has come out a few days before we leave on tour."
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