First there was the suggestion from Ponting that England had moved the First Test from Lord’s on purpose because Australia have a good record there (where the First Test was played in 2005, but hasn’t usually been in previous Ashes summers). Now, Ricky is weighing in on the subject of Flintoff’s fitness, suggesting that a half-fit Freddie would be more of a liability than an asset to the hosts.
Well, thanks Ricky. I don’t think anyone else had realised that. I doubt that any in the England setup will be keen on taking advice from the opposition captain, in any case.
To some extent, the real reason for all these ‘controversial’ pronouncements is the unwillingness of either the English or Australian media to think about anything cricket-related other than through the prism of the upcoming Ashes, but the Australian side has recently shown a propensity for media spin which, with respect to Nathan Hauritz, seems to surpass the current team’s ability with regard to the variety of spin more familiar to cricketers.