|Photos||Video & Audio||Blogs||Statistics||Archive||Shop||Mobile|
December 4, 2006
"He felt a slight discomfort and he just wanted to make sure everything was alright," Fletcher told reporters afterwards. "He came off and we just felt more comfortable with the other bowlers bowling. Basically he's making steady progress. He's played back-to-back Tests and he's done quite a bit of bowling in that time, but we've got no worries at the moment."
Flintoff's fitness is absolutely pivotal to England's Ashes chances, but Fletcher insisted that the problem was simply a side-effect of his long injury lay-off. He underwent further surgery on his troublesome left ankle in June, and returned to action in India in September for the ICC Champions Trophy. Unless a surprise is in store tomorrow, he will not have to bowl again competitively until the third Test starts at Perth on Thursday week.
"It's a light discomfort, but the medical staff are confident at the moment and say it's just from having been off and coming back from injury. We are just going to have to wait and see what he's like after couple of days, but we're not even going to send him for a scan at this stage. He just feels he's been overbowled in back-to-back Tests."
An injury to Flintoff would be considerably more damaging to England than any concerns that Glenn McGrath's ankle has been causing to Australia, but Fletcher insisted that Flintoff would have been fit to bowl had he been required today. "We discussed it and he could have taken the new ball. In fact, it would have been him and Steve Harmison."
Ishant Sharma has often been the butt of jokes, and sometimes deservedly so. Today, however, the joke was on England
The leave outside off stump has been critical to M Vijay's success since his India comeback last year. Contrary to popular opinion, such patience and self-denial comes naturally to him
They have to see a glass that is half-full, and play the game as if it is just that, a game; and an opportunity
In India's win at Lord's, Ishant Sharma took the best bowling figures by an Indian in the fourth innings of a Test outside Asia. Here are five other best bowling efforts by Indians in the fourth innings of Tests outside Asia
Alastair Cook has got used to feeling of the axe hanging over him. Only his team-mates can save England now
India's wretched run away from home began at Lord's in 2011. A young team full of self-belief may have brought it to an end with their victory at the same venue three years later
What's wrong with their cricket? Well, what isn't?