And so Michael Vaughans reign ends as it began, amid the chaos of a South African steamrollering at Edgbaston. The venue that became synonymous with English triumph in the summer of 2005 has reverted once again to being a scene of captaincy disasters. First Nasser Hussain in 2003, and now Vaughan five years later. Both have departed the ground as chastened and spent leaders, crushed and compromised by the might of their opposite number, Graeme Smith.This was not the end that Vaughan deserved. Like Hussain before him, he unquestionably ranks among the very best captains that England have produced since the second world war, but in the final analysis, both were found wanting in the leap from good to great. Hussain failed against Australia and lost the Ashes inside 11 days in 2001 and 2002-03, and though Vaughan may have won the subsequent contest, he has since lost something even more precious - the aura that he established so painstakingly during his glory years of 2004 and 2005.The man whos clapped and cajoled from his familiar position at mid-off this summer is not the same leader who ran rings around Ricky Ponting in 2005, as England moved clear of the chasing pack to become the second-best side in the world. In an emotional address to the media at Loughborough, the pressures that have come with his position came pouring into full view, and Vaughan admitted that, had he not taken this decision, it might well have been taken out of his hands. In the cruel world of sport, heroes can be recast as zeroes with a haste not seen in any other walk of life.And yet, Vaughan already knows this all too well, for the heroism of his second coming as England captain has had little to do with on-field events, and everything to do with his awe-inspiring defiance of an appalling knee injury that, by rights, ought to have curtailed his career in its pomp, three years ago. Who knows what he would have achieved, personally and for England, had he not turned for that second run at Lahores Bagh-e-Jinnah in December 2005, and suffered the injury that was to cut him adrift from his charges for 18 dark months?The mark of the man is his response to adversity, and while England drifted rudderless for four subsequent series - culminating in their 5-0 Ashes drubbing of last winter - Vaughan soldiered on in the shadows, overcoming surgery, rehab and gruelling strengthening sessions in the gym, as he implored his body to pull together once again and give him the chance to resume the mission that he had been forced to abort. His efforts were not always appreciated, and he was denounced as a distraction while England were lurching to defeat in Australia, but the dedication he brought to his role could never be called into question.After all, it is easy now to forget just how infused with optimism English cricket had been when Vaughan set off on that fateful tour of Pakistan. There was no leader in the game who could match his authority - not Smith, the ICCs choice as captain for the World XI, whose stock took a tumble against the Aussies in that same winter, and certainly not Ponting, who wouldnt hit the high note of his captaincy for another 12 months. England were on a record roll of six consecutive series wins and could dream, without delusion, that world dominance was in their sights.Instead they were struck down with a vengeance that might have been lifted straight from a Greek tragedy. In the space of 48 chaotic hours in Nagpur in March 2006, Vaughan and Simon Jones vanished without trace to career-threatening knee injuries, and Marcus Trescothick fled the tour with the first surfacing of his stress-related illness. Andrew Flintoff was next to go lame, as his ankle gave way ahead of the Pakistan series in July, and suddenly a team which had been forged in Vaughans own granite-willed image had been scattered to the winds like cherry blossom.As they struggled to compute the chaos that had hit them, Englands selectors chose to retain Vaughan in absentia, a loyalty that in hindsight seems misplaced but which spoke volumes of the regard in which he was held. He had found his feet as a leader on an arduous tour of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka in 2003-04, in which physical fitness had been installed as the cornerstone of his new team ethic, and where he cemented his relationship with that other great casualty of the post-2005 meltdown, Duncan Fletcher. By the time the Ashes had been sealed 21 months later, the players were responding to his commands like a racehorse to its jockey. Deft tweaks and touches, but the firm use of the whip when required, allowed Vaughan to remain a man of his people, but a cut above all at once.The grand statements made the record-books - Englands long-awaited victories in West Indies and South Africa, and of course the Ashes - but it was the little moments that made the difference where Vaughans captaincy was concerned. His denouncement of a misleadingly comfortable victory at Port Elizabeth in 2004-05, for instance, as shoddy, or a memorable fourth-evening session at Headingley in 2004, when out of the dregs of a match destined for a draw, Vaughan caught a whiff of cordite in his nostrils, and ordered his men into a full-frontal assault against New Zealands bewildered batsmen. Four wickets followed in 18 balls before the close, and the rout was wrapped up before lunch the following morning.That was then, but this is now, and though Vaughan has returned to the saddle, the beast beneath him is an unfamiliar mare - frisky and lazy in equal but erratic measures. Moreover, in his first coming as England captain, the certainty of Vaughans purpose masked lapses with the bat that were all-too-frequent for a man whod once been ranked as the No. 1 player in the world. Unlike Hussain or Steve Waugh (or even, one day, Smith) Vaughans is not a style that has adapted well with age. He has always played like a prince among paupers, because the sublime elegance of his strokeplay demanded a cavalier approach. And yet, his immobility in the field, albeit belied by a thrilling spread-eagled catch in the deep on Friday morning, has been as hard to disguise as his desperate struggle for form.Ugly runs were never Vaughans forte. His greatest series as a batsman was also his most graceful, in the 2002-03 Ashes, when Australia were whipped and driven for three outstanding centuries in five matches. For his final act as England captain to be an infinitesimally misdirected cover-drive was cruelly apposite. The old intent never wavered, with bat or in the field. But somewhere between his two stints in the side, the signals being emitted became scrambled.But if there is one aspect of his timing that has not deserted him, it is the manner in which he has departed from the role. Vaughan desperately wished to be given one last crack at the Aussies, and a more stubborn man could have called in his final favours and brazened his way to 2009 regardless. He knows, however, that the mission is no longer his to undertake. The authority that gave him the edge in 2005 stemmed directly from his success Down Under two years earlier, and with that in mind, the time is right to hand over the role to the one England batsman whom the Aussies truly fear.Hussain knew when his time was up, and now, in a remarkable repetition of history, so too does Vaughan. At 1pm tomorrow, Kevin Pietersen will be unveiled as Englands new captain across all three forms of the game, and at The Oval on Thursday, he will lead the team for the first time in Test cricket. Vaughan will not be present in body, as he steps away for now to take stock of his career, but in spirit he will persist, as Hussain did before him. The gooduns endure, because the gratitude will never dim. Ivan Provorov Jersey .C. -- Glenn Howard needed an extra end to move into the Masters Grand Slam of Curling final. Shayne Gostisbehere Jersey . PETERSBURG, Fla. http://www.authentichockeyshopflyers.com/authentic-michael-raffl-flyers-jersey/ .ca looks back at the stories and moments that made the year memorable. Taylor Leier Jersey . Nine days before the opening ceremony, organizing committee chief Dmitry Chernyshenko said Wednesday that Sochi is "fully ready" and will deliver safe, friendly and well-run games that defy the grim reports that have overshadowed preparations. Philadelphia Flyers Jerseys . Rousey will put her perfect 8-0 record and hardware on the line against another undefeated fighter, 7-0 Sara McMann in the main event of UFC 170, which will be held at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas Nevada on February 22nd. Cricket gives me - has given me for as long as I can remember - a sense of time: a certain feeling or event in my life is referenced with the memory of a particular game. It also gives me a sense of place. This may be an extraordinarily blinkered way to look at the world (and you have to be extraordinarily blinkered to have Queens Park Oval flash across your mind the moment someone says Trinidad), but I think of cities in terms of their cricket grounds. It is the most enduring geography lesson I have ever had, and it brings closer and makes familiar places with which I have little acquaintance. It is, I have found, something that gives my life a coordinate, a kind of centre amid the changing clutter of daily life with which it is tough to keep up.But most of all, perhaps, cricket gives me a sense of myself. They say you only get a sense of yourself when you see yourself in relation to another. Cricket is that great other.Its like a relationship, this thing between the fan and his sport, some say. Well, only those who are not fans say that. Because it is not like any relationship that Ive ever known.On the average day, it is a relationship that is too full of shame and humiliation, too unrequited and too committed at the same time, too like a one-way street. If my wife had let me down half as many times as India have on the pitch, I would have walked out on her. But when it comes to the game, I can never, however great the disappointment in the last match and however certain I am of impending doom in this one, bring myself to turn away.Can you? If you can, you are not one of us. Which, come to think of it, is not such a bad thing. Because you are spared the painful pleasure of being a masochist. All fans - the ones like me who need sport to give a sort of shape to life - are masochists. WWhat else can you be when you switch on the TV at three oclock in the morning knowing that your team is going to get a pasting - again?For those of us who are too far gone, gone far enough in fact to embrace torment (We lost 0-3 against Zimbabwe? No matter, throw us a defeat against Bangladesh.ddddddddddddWell still watch), its not a choice. Its a compulsion. Addiction does not have rationality at its heart.The pact between a fan and his team is sacrosanct. It cannot be broken. It is not like the colas or the cars or the credit cards or the car tyres the players endorse. Dont like it? Flush it down the toilet. Sell it off. Exchange it for something better. Buy a new one.When things go wrong on the pitch, some of us go on mock funeral processions. Some of us threaten players families. (The first gesture is banal, the second despicable. But morality or ethics is not the issue here; it seldom is when you are talking about addiction.) Still few of us can stay away when our players walk out on to the field. Were we able to do that, TV ratings would slip and channels would not pay millions for satellite rights, companies would hesitate before pumping in billions to sponsor the team, and soft-drink majors would worry about putting their money where the nations heart isnt. The fact that they have not suggests that there are millions out there like me. Sometimes it feels like a brotherhood of misery.Every fan realises this: feeling miserable is part of the deal. But riding the misery and sticking with it is the deal. You cant support another team (Namibia?), or suddenly be passionate about another sport (ice hockey?). Its this or nothing. And nothing is so much worse. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '