Flintoff determined to play through the pain barrier
Andrew Flintoff insists only a “very, very serious” injury would stop him firing England’s bid to regain the Ashes from Australia.
Flintoff was named man of the match after a second-innings five-wicket haul in England’s dramatic second Test victory over Australia at Lord’s.
The 31-year-old’s performance came despite the pain of a persistent knee problem, which has put his fitness for the third Test at Edgbaston in doubt.
But Flintoff, who last week announced his retirement from Test cricket at the end of the series, is determined to go flat out for the remaining three Tests.
Flintoff told BBC Radio Five Live: “The good thing was I bowled a lot of overs and kept my pace up.
“I’d be lying if I said I’m not a little bit sore but I was confident when making the announcement that I was retiring from Test cricket that I had four to go, and now it’s three.
“It’d have to be something very, very serious not to play in the next three Test matches.”
Although his Lord’s performance showcased Flintoff’s ability, he added that he would not be tempted to go back on his retirement decision.
“There are no thoughts of changing my mind,” he said. “The things I am going through to get on the cricket field I can do short term but I won’t be able to do it much longer.”
Flintoff, speaking at the launch of his own charity, the AF Foundation, which seeks to raise money for children’s rehabilitation and physiotherapy units, added: “It was a team effort. It was nice to get the plaudits on the final day and get a few wickets but I think everyone at some point contributed.”
With three Tests to go and only a 1-0 lead, he also warned England not to rest on their laurels.
He said: “It is nice with a lot of people congratulating you but we can’t be complacent, we have only won one Test match.
“We have still got three to go and, knowing them [Australia], they are going to come back hard.
We’ll just have to go that little bit harder.”—AFP