London, Apr 1: Former England wicketkeeper and captain Alec Stewart has backed under fire captain Andrew Strauss and said he should not be removed, as the team could face serious problems in the future.
Stewart feels that there is no guarantee of players' spot in the team, but considering Strauss' remarkable record as England skipper, he should backed right now, especially when England is on the verge of losing their top ICC Test rank.
England has lost four consecutive Test matches, and would be looking to avoid another loss in the subcontinent when they take on Sri Lanka in the second Test in Colombo on Tuesday, April 3.
"Andrew Strauss is not bullet-proof, and his place in the side is certainly not guaranteed. But, I am definitely not calling for England to drop their skipper for the second Test against Sri Lanka," Stewart writes in his column for The Mirror.
"No player has a divine right to be selected, whether they are captain or not and Strauss is no different," he added.
Despite poor form, Stewart believes he should carry on leading England to get over his dismal form.
"Strauss is an astute individual, who sets high standards for both himself and his team. He will be fully aware that he is short of runs and that losing four Tests on the bounce, means England's position as the No.1 side in the world will be lost if they don't win this week's Colombo Test," Stewart writes.
"Whenever a player goes through a barren spell his position will obviously come under scrutiny but people should be careful in what they wish for. Even if Strauss misses out with the bat again this week I still believe that the selectors must keep him in charge for the West Indies series at the start of summer," he added.
Former England cricket captain Mike Gatting has backed Andrew Strauss to tackle the Lankan spin attack, but stressed he must find a method that suits him.
"He needs to work it out for himself. He has some good people around the team, the likes of Graham Gooch and Andy Flower, they made us world number one. It’s a question of confidence – and it's a question of how they play spin," The Daily Star quoted Gatting, as saying.
"They did not play it well in Pakistan or during the first Test in Sri Lanka. We have to learn lessons, build up some confidence over the summer and go to India in better shape," he added.
Strauss hit his last century back in November 2010 against Australia and questions have been raised about his place in the side.