• England v West Indies, 1st Test, Lord's

Strauss vows to silence his critics

ESPN staff
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Andrew Strauss insists he still has plenty to contribute to England © Getty Images
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Andrew Strauss insists he has never entertained the prospect of stepping down as England captain.

With just one century in 49 Test innings, Strauss' position as captain has been questioned, although he retains the complete backing of his team-mates.

After four losses from five Tests over the winter, England are looking to cement their status as the No. 1 Test side when they take on West Indies in the first Test on Thursday. And Strauss insists he still has plenty to contribute to the side, both as a batsman and as captain.

"I'd like to be in a position to know when the time is right to go," Strauss said. "I don't think we're there at the moment - in fact, I don't think we're anywhere near. It's honestly not something I've thought about. There will be a moment in the future but this doesn't feel like the time. A reassuring thing is that I've never felt the job is getting on top of me.

"I'm still really excited to be leading this group of players and I feel honoured and privileged to do so when English cricket is very strong. As long as I still have that motivation and drive and feel I can really make a difference, then I'll be keen to continue.

"It's dangerous to look too far ahead. Things can change quickly. If you're too wedded to some ideal moment to step down, you can be surprised. So the way I'm thinking is that, if I'm helping the side become better both as a captain and batsman, then I don't see any reason to change."

While Strauss insists the pressure to step down did not affect him, he is determined to silence his critics with a strong display with the bat against West Indies.

He said: "It didn't feel like a witch hunt - it just felt like the issue of the day. The only way to switch attention elsewhere is to perform. That's what I intend to do.

"Lord's is a great place to start. I've had a lot of success here and so has the team. We're all excited to start the summer on a high note. The most important thing is to concentrate on the ball coming down and not let any of the peripheral stuff influence you."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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