'Crazy day' sees Dawson head for South Africa

Tottenham Hotspur defender Michael Dawson has told of the 'crazy day' which saw him called into England's World Cup squad at the last minute, following an injury to captain Rio Ferdinand.

"It's a crazy game and things can change in a split second," Dawson told Spurs' official website.

"One minute I'm trying to arrange my holiday, then I get a call asking if I was on holiday because Rio had pulled out of training. I said ‘no' and then I was just waiting by the phone before getting a call saying I would be picked up in an hour. It's been a crazy day."

The Spurs man was in impressive form as the White Hart Lane club finished the 2009/10 season in fourth place in the Premier League, sealing Champions League football for the first time in Tottenham's history.

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Dawson, currently uncapped at senior level, was a member of Fabio Capello's provisional 30 man squad for the World Cup, but initially failed to make the Italian's final 23 party on Tuesday afternoon.

The former Nottingham Forest defender expressed his sympathy for Ferdinand, who now faces four to six weeks on the sidelines.

"For Rio to get injured, there would be no worse feeling for him as a player," Dawson explained. "To miss the biggest tournament in the world as the captain, I feel for him.

"I missed the Carling Cup final in 2008 [when Tottenham beat Chelsea 2-1 at Wembley], and there was nothing anyone could have said to me that could have made me feel any better. For Rio, the feeling will be the same, but it's a chance for me now.

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"I've not had time to think about it but I've had call after call with people wishing me good luck. I know all the lads through having been with them for two weeks so I'll just be going out there and training as normal.

"I'll be going out there still having not yet won a senior cap, so where better place to get one if that was to happen. But I'll just go there and train like I do every day at Spurs and we'll have to see what happens.

Dawson will see his acclimatisation aided by the presence of four of his Tottenham Hotspur team-mates, including defensive partner Ledley King, already in Capello's squad.

His inclusion comes just days after club manager Harry Redknapp had spoken out against the way Capello had failed to give Dawson any playing time in England's two pre-tournament matches.

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