ECB's number one target Michael Vaughan will not be new England cricket supremo

The former Ashes winning captain is unlikely to leave his media roles to replace Paul Downton

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The Independent Online

England are still trying to finalise what they expect from their new cricket supremo. Four days after the departure of Paul Downton, the duties of his replacement, although expected to be more hands-on in the selection and running of the team, have still not been fully established.

A long list of candidates has been drawn up by the England and Wales Cricket Board – and they are not short of advice – but it seems unlikely that the early favourite, Michael Vaughan, will take the job.

As captain and architect of the historic 2005 Ashes-winning side, he has obvious credentials. He is a natural, confident leader who understands how the players work. But he has many duties in the media and business and would have to take a substantial pay cut if he took the job.

Vaughan was on a lucrative, part-time contract with the ECB as a batting consultant until last year when it was terminated, ironically by Downton as a cost-cutting measure. That might have received more publicity than it did but was overshadowed by Downton’s other big decision, the sacking of Kevin Pietersen.

England have not set a time scale for hiring their director but will want him in place before the home international season begins on 21 May. Equally, they are keen not to disrupt the tour of West Indies, which ends on 6 May.

Vaughan has close links with the ECB’s incoming chairman, Colin Graves, who has been running Yorkshire for the last few years. He has already had long discussions with Tom Harrison, the ECB’s new chief executive who is the main driver of change.

Andrew Strauss, captain until three years ago, has quietly announced his interest, and his closeness to the modern game, excelling in both main forms, may make him the ideal man.