Who really thought Freddie would be seen

Andrew Flintoff
Andrew Flintoff celebrates running out Ricky Ponting - Oval 2009

on a cricket pitch again?

When Andrew Flintoff announced his retirement from Test cricket after last year’s Ashes series but that he was going to play on in limited overs games, who had a sneaky feeling that in reality this was the final send off?

No final England bow in a Twenty20 or a fifty over international, not a last hurrah in the IPL, not even a quiet send off for Lancs second XI.

As the months went on and another announcement followed another announcement that he would miss this series, that deadline it didn’t come as any great shock when he finally admitted to himself yesterday that it was over. Sad but not a shock.

A great? No, he was good, he had great spells and he got a crowd up like no one else of late in an England shirt. We’ll all remember the ’05 Ashes series and the things he did in regaining the urn in ’09, skittling the Aussies at Lord’s last year with his first 5 wicket haul at headquarters was great. As was his real last act on a cricket ground, the running out of Ricky Ponting at the Oval with a direct hit.

Talk of him turning to TV and such but when interviewed he mentioned a retarded talent show as the preferred option to talking about the game all day.

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