Vaughan told to mind his words

Reports that Michael Vaughan had been reprimanded for commenting on team selection last night brought an extraordinary reaction from England officials in the shape of an admission contained in a denial.

Reports that Michael Vaughan had been reprimanded for commenting on team selection last night brought an extraordinary reaction from England officials in the shape of an admission contained in a denial.

The England captain, under whose leadership the national side has won three of the last four Test series, has been in hot water for telling reporters during the fourth Test in Antigua in April that wicketkeeper Geraint Jones would be given "a proper run" in the side.

The England and Wales Cricket Board responded angrily to reports that Vaughan had received a ticking off, branding them as "inaccurate, spurious and untrue" and dismissing suggestions that his opinion was not valued as "ridiculous". Astonishingly, however, the same ECB statement revealed Vaughan had indeed received a slap on the wrist in the form of a letter from John Carr, the ECB's director of cricket, making it clear it was not his place to comment on selection matters.

Unlike some of his predecessors as captain, Vaughan is not a member of the selection panel. But the letter was not, apparently, a reprimand, much as it might seem to be.

An ECB spokesman said: "The ECB today totally rejected reports in some newspapers that Michael Vaughan had been 'reprimanded' by the ECB for comments he had made in relation to team selection issues, and the ridiculous inference that he was not valued by the Board.

"Michael Vaughan recently received a letter from John Carr merely pointing out that he should be careful not to make public comments which might appear to 'tie the hands' of the England selectors to making particular decisions in relation to picking the England team. This was not intended to be taken as a reprimand."

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