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Yorkshire Bank 40
I've got to play some more consistent cricket and get more consistent scores and batting at number three I believe will help me do that.
Quotes of the week
England captain Michael Vaughan is backing his young bowling attack to reward the selectors' faith shown in them with a good display at Lord's.
Matthew Hoggard has once again been left out of the starting XI for the first Test against New Zealand, which is live on Sky Sports.
The absence of the Yorkshire seamer means England have decided to keep faith with the team that turned around the series on Kiwi soil, bouncing back from defeat in the first Test to seal an impressive 2-1 win.
Despite a poor display in the Napier Test, James Anderson has retained his place alongside left-armer Ryan Sidebottom and rising star Stuart Broad.
Vaughan hopes his bowlers - who with spinner Monty Panesar also playing boast just 64 caps between them - can justify the decision to leave out the more experienced Hoggard, who will head to Durham to play for his county.
"Hoggy has done everything we could have asked. He's gone back and bowled well for Yorkshire and got wickets, but when we've won a series and the guys that have come in have done reasonably well, they deserve another opportunity," he said.
"They've been given that opportunity at Lord's in front of a lot of people and hopefully they can produce some really good performances.
"Their goal is to try to keep the likes of Hoggard and Harmison out of the side so it's all there for them - they've just got to produce."
There will be one change to England's line-up in the series opener, skipper Vaughan confirming that he will be coming in at number three in the batting order.
Left-hander Andrew Strauss, who batted in the role during the Tests in New Zealand, has asked to return to his usual spot at the top of the order.
The move allows Vaughan to come out of the firing line against the new ball after managing just 123 runs in six innings against the Black Caps.
"Strauss batted at three in New Zealand and he wants to open and I opened in New Zealand and prefer to bat at three so it's pretty straightforward," he explained.
"I didn't play as well as I could, certainly in that last game in Napier but I look back at the last 12 months and I've probably only had two bad games - the last game in Sri Lanka and the last game in New Zealand.
"I've got to play some more consistent cricket and get more consistent scores and batting at number three I believe will help me do that.
"I've always preferred batting at three as a captain. My record at three is quite good, certainly last summer when I came back I scored a lot of runs and I'm very confident I can do the same again this summer."
While England may have decided to keep the faith New Zealand will have several new faces in their side.
Opener Aaron Redmond and middle-order batsman Daniel Flynn will earn their first caps while Brendon McCullum is likely to be promoted up the order to bat at number five.
The tourists received a much-needed boost on the eve of the Test with the news that captain Daniel Vettori has been passed fit to lead a side described by opposite number Vaughan as 'workmanlike'.
"We're a relatively new side at the moment, beginning to find our own identity," Vettori, who suffered a cut on his spinning finger in the warm-up fixture against Essex, said.
"We have got a group of guys who try pretty hard and for us to succeed at this level we have to be at the top of our game all the time.
"If we work hard we give ourselves half a chance because we're not blessed with the stars of other sides. But that has been a trait of New Zealand cricket ever since it started.
"We know if we compete somewhere near our potential we can win the series over here."
After all the hype it may well be the weather has the last word. The forecast is for rain on the opening two days, with clearer skies at the weekend.
Read the views of former England captain Nasser Hussain with skysports.com.