Cricket: Waugh is backed by Warne

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The Independent Online
STEVE WAUGH, who is expected to be named as the Australian Test side's new captain today, has received the support of Shane Warne, his main rival for the job. "I just expect Steve to be captain basically, like everybody else does," Warne said in Melbourne yesterday.

Waugh is favourite to become the new Test captain in place of Mark Taylor, who retired from international cricket last week. The batsman was established as Australia's one-day captain, but has missed most of the triangular series against England and Sri Lanka through injury.

The captaincy decision would have been more clear-cut had Warne not proved such an effective replacement in Waugh's absence. Australia have won six consecutive matches under Warne's captaincy. His attacking fields and extrovert leadership have been a revelation, and despite his modesty he admits he would relish the role of captain.

"I'd like to think I've a chance. I think I've grabbed my opportunity in the one-dayers and done a pretty good job," Warne said.