Michael Vaughan at last found the sort of form that could earn him an England recall by striking a near faultless 82 in Yorkshire's Friends Provident Trophy match with Sussex Sharks which opened the home season at Headingley yesterday.
On a two-paced pitch which was well exploited by the Sussex seamers, Vaughan was strong in defence and quick to attack as he helped Yorkshire recover from a parlous 31 for 3 to close on 227 for 5 and go on to win by 14 runs.
The former England captain adopted a cautious approach early on but his patience was rewarded, and as well as stroking four fours he also hit three perfectly timed sixes. His first half-century of the season came off 87 balls but he eventually fell to his 116th delivery after adding an invaluable 117 for the fourth wicket with the in-form Gerard Brophy, who went on to snare five victims behind the stumps – a Yorkshire record in the competition.
Vaughan pulled his penultimate ball from Robin Martin-Jenkins into the crowd in the East Stand but the next appeared just to shave the off-bail with wicketkeeper, Matt Prior, stood up to the stumps. The batsman looked at umpire Vanburn Holder and walked immediately when the dismissal was confirmed. It was Vaughan's highest score for Yorkshire in any competition since making 95 against Derbyshire in the final NatWest Pro40 match of the 2007 season.
On Saturday, in Yorkshire's Championship match with Durham at the Riverside, Vaughan could only make a painstaking 20 but it helped Yorkshire scrape a draw against the reigning champions. As the visitors attempted to bat out for a draw, Vaughan took nearly two hours over his 96-ball innings. Graham Onions impressed in the field, returning 5 for 56.
In yesterday's IPL action, Kevin Pietersen finally found a semblance of form but could not stop his Bangalore Royal Challengers losing to the Delhi Daredevils.
Pietersen scored 37 off 25 balls with two fours and two sixes. He will play one more IPL game before joining England to play a Test series against West Indies.