Tag Player Profile
He can smash you out of the park, any time he wants. He can scare you with his pace/heavy-balls if not take edge of your bat. He's a brilliant slip catcher & leadership qualities weren't bad either..
Yet, as you read this ~ Andrew Flintoff is no where the achiever he could have been!
Reason? well, little is to blame the coaches Flintoff has had, little to blame the English selectors. Plenty of blame should be on media in England but mostly, like always - its the man himself. Andrew should've hid himself when photographers around the world were pleading snaps. Fan cheer is fine, but at times you need to concentrate on what you actually are - not an actor but a cricketer. I strongly believe that Flintoff took it on himself to battle Aussies in 2006 Ashes, instead of bringing best out of remaining 10 players.
Writing a cricket profile of Andrew Flintoff is no bloggers nightmare. Although itsonlycricket.com is only 2 years old, man behind (me) have been watching all cricket Internationally for almost 15 years now.. Greame Hick (the middle order England batsman) used to thrill me with his amazing hand-eye co-ordination, but I feel no hesitation in saying that Andrew Flintoff is the best natural cricketer to have come from England.. yes, better than whichever name you want to debate with.
Talk about batting - best time for Flintoff was during 2004 ICC Champions Trophy in England. He batted number 5, & always took his time to get settled. 20-30 deliveries were defended (including those who deserved fours), just to make sure Andrew starts feeling the bat in hand. From then onwards - umpires asked for new ball every next ball.
Bottom line - Andrew Flintoff needs an hour of warm-up while batting, before striking middle of bat. Lately I've watched him throw his wicket away, trying to blast 5-10th ball he faces. To me, Flintoff is one of those batters who need more than usual to get going, n thus must acquire a batting spot in England XI (preferably 4th or 5th) to extract more time per innings.
Talk about bowling, I'm yet to find someone who touches 90 miles per hour, yet is accurate & awkwardly bouncy. Andrew Flintoff posses huge body, which imparts tons of momentum over a small cricket ball. Flintoff is rarely wayward, & he can go around the wicket to left handers to swing the ball away.. a very tough art to master.
Bottom line - world is yet to watch the best bowling effort Andrew is capable of.
Indian connection must be discussed here, coz against India was when Flintoff first emerged. now he'll be against same opposition for the 3rd time, if his injury allows him a come back. In normal circumstances, England think tank will bring Freddie for the 3rd test match, if at all.