Not surprising either - it's easily forgotten. Vaughan was never, even when his knees were at their worst, the sort of bad fielder whose bad fielding was obvious apart from when the ball went into (and often enough straight out of again) his hands. He was not a classically inept fielder like Tufnell or Malcolm, merely someone whose hands were woeful. His arm was OK and he was, while far from swift over the ground, certainly not slow.
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It's weird because most batsmen who have Vaughan's elegance and talent also make fine natural fielders. I can't think of any who don't.
Most disappointing that he's turned into something of a rentagob so soon in his post-cricket media career too. I expected rather better from such an instinctive and wily captain.
As an aside it's typical of the happenstance approach we seem to have towards long-term planning in this country that it was his batting form that secured him the captain's armband and ultimately his captaincy comfortably eclipsed his batting. We occasionally stumble into success despite rather than because of our system.
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I've always been of the view if he never became captain & was allowed to play mainly as batsman he could have easily had 25 hundreds & averaged close to 50.
Well I think once his purple patch is over he is in the middle of building a team that might have hindered his concentration towards batting and might resulted in him not being attain the heights of 02-03 although he did have a good innings time and again and after knee injury he had to concentrate more on lot other things and by end of 08 seaason he kinda lost it.
Still averaging more than 50 with out captaincy make one think that captaincy did effected him whether its true or not.
The real question is why he was so good for that short period of time. And personally, I don't think there's any need to look for a reason for that either. It would be an incredible statistical phenomenon if he played at exactly the same level for his entire career.
Vaughan test career went like this IMO:
- SA 99/00 to NZ 01/02: Decent young bat who was showing glimpses that he could be a good top batsman for ENG in the future. I was actually at OT when he scored to sexy hundred for Pakistan 01.
- SRI 02 to SA 03 (the Birmigham test). As soon as he began opening he peaked & for this period he produced argubably the best batting by an Englisham in the last 20 years.
- Then he became captain & he tended to blow hot & cold as a batsman. Certain odd technical flaws crept in i.e him being bowled off-stump alot, then came his knee injury post PAK 05 & Vaughan never was the same again.
I think the captaincy affected his batting, but not to any great extent. I'd have backed him to average maybe 40, as opposed to 37, in the period where he was skipper.
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