England lack cover as Vaughan fears worst

Vaughan injured his troublesome right knee running between the wickets during England's final warm-up game before the first Test and was immediately sent for a scan. But the images of the scan, which were sent by e-mail to England, were not clear enough for the specialist to make a proper diagnosis. The same images are to be re-sent this morning, whereupon a decision will be made.

The state of Vaughan's knee and the cricket being played by England, who were comprehensively beaten yesterday by Pakistan A in Lahore, mean that he had plenty to occupy his mind as he flew with the team to Multan this morning. The first Test is only three days away and England look worryingly short of match practice. Finding a potential replacement for Vaughan is proving to be even more difficult than sending an e-mail. The selectors were hoping to secure the services of either Owais Shah or Robert Key, but both players have recently undergone surgery on injuries they picked up during the summer.

"We have had discussions on possible replacements and they will continue over the next 24 hours," said Duncan Fletcher, the England coach. "Owais Shah and Robert Key were the obvious natural replacements but neither is available. We were keen to look at Owais but he has had a knee operation that was more serious than initially thought, so he is out for some time. Robert has gone in for a shoulder operation, so he is also ruled out."

When England announced their teams for Pakistan, David Graveney, the chairman of selectors, stated that replacements would be picked from the Academy squad, which has been practising regularly at Loughborough. Shah and Key are in the squad but their unavailability leaves the selectors with the choice of Essex's Alastair Cook, Middlesex's Ed Joyce or Sussex's Michael Yardy.

The final decision may be further influenced by Andrew Strauss's desire to return to England for the birth of his first child, which is due to coincide with the third Test in Lahore. Strauss's departure would leave England needing an opening batsman and Cook is the only fit Academy player who performs this role for his county.

The left-handed Cook had an excellent season for Essex, scoring 1,466 runs at an average of 52 - he also scored a double hundred in a non-first-class game against Australia.

Vikram Solanki is another candidate. The Worcestershire captain has opened the batting for England in limited-over cricket and will join up with the squad at the end of November for the five one-day matches.

election 2015The 10 best quotes of the campaign
A caravan being used as a polling station in Ford near Salisbury, during the 2010 election
election 2015The Independent's guide to get you through polling day
David Blunkett joins the Labour candidate for Redcar Anna Turley on a campaigning visit last month
voicesWhat I learnt from my years in government, by the former Home Secretary David Blunkett
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: ‘We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon’, says Ed Balls

'We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon'

In an exclusive interview, Ed Balls says he won't negotiate his first Budget with SNP MPs - even if Labour need their votes to secure its passage
VE Day 70th anniversary: How ordinary Britons celebrated the end of war in Europe

How ordinary Britons celebrated VE Day

Our perception of VE Day usually involves crowds of giddy Britons casting off the shackles of war with gay abandon. The truth was more nuanced
They came in with William Caxton's printing press, but typefaces still matter in the digital age

Typefaces still matter in the digital age

A new typeface once took years to create, now thousands are available at the click of a drop-down menu. So why do most of us still rely on the old classics, asks Meg Carter?
Discovery of 'missing link' between the two main life-forms on Earth could explain evolution of animals, say scientists

'Missing link' between Earth's two life-forms found

New microbial species tells us something about our dark past, say scientists
The Pan Am Experience is a 'flight' back to the 1970s that never takes off - at least, not literally

Pan Am Experience: A 'flight' back to the 70s

Tim Walker checks in and checks out a four-hour journey with a difference
Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics - it's everywhere in the animal world

Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics

Voting, mutual back-scratching, coups and charismatic leaders - it's everywhere in the animal world
Crisp sales are in decline - but this tasty trivia might tempt back the turncoats

Crisp sales are in decline

As a nation we're filling up on popcorn and pitta chips and forsaking their potato-based predecessors
Ronald McDonald the muse? Why Banksy, Ron English and Keith Coventry are lovin' Maccy D's

Ronald McDonald the muse

A new wave of artists is taking inspiration from the fast food chain
13 best picnic blankets

13 best picnic blankets

Dine al fresco without the grass stains and damp bottoms with something from our pick of picnic rugs
Barcelona 3 Bayern Munich 0 player ratings: Lionel Messi scores twice - but does he score highest in our ratings?

Barcelona vs Bayern Munich player ratings

Lionel Messi scores twice - but does he score highest in our ratings?
Martin Guptill: Explosive New Zealand batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Explosive batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Martin Guptill has smashed early runs for Derbyshire and tells Richard Edwards to expect more from the 'freakish' Brendon McCullum and his buoyant team during their tour of England
General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'