Former England captain, Michael Vaughan, has described the speculation surrounding the future of current skipper, Andrew Strauss, as “ridiculous”, and has backed his successor to continue leading the side.
Strauss has struggled in recent series, averaging just 26, in 2011, and has scored just one century in his last 50 Test innings, leading some pundits to question whether he is still good enough to lead the side.
Vaughan accepts that the 35-year-old “needs a big score” but says suggestions that he should be left out of the team are totally over the top, as he believes Strauss’ man-management skills are vital to his side’s success.
"As a captain, it's ridiculous to talk about Strauss' position", Vaughan told ESPNcricinfo. "You only get better as a captain: tactically and management-wise.
“I'd be a better captain now than I was when I retired. You're more mature. You've seen more situations. And that's what captaincy is: it's a man-management role”, he added.
Following his disappointing performances against Pakistan and Sri Lanka, Strauss has returned to play for Middlesex, in an attempt to find his form during the break in England’s fixtures.
However, he has also struggled for his county, scoring just six runs in their match against Durham, including a second ball duck in the first innings.
England’s next series sees the side host the West Indies, in May, and Vaughan has called upon the skipper to prove his worth to the side, when they take on Ottis Gibson’s men. Place a cricket bet on the favourites, England, or take aim at a big payout by gambling on the West Indies.
"There's no question that, in the series against the West Indies, he needs a big score or that problem will get bigger”, Vaughan said. "You can't keep going on as an opening batsman, even if the side are winning.”