Retires from first-class cricket to take up appointment under Peter Moores May 7, 2007

Andy Flower named England assistant coach

Cricinfo staff

Andy Flower (right) and Michael Vaughan: They will now be working more closely together © Getty Images
Andy Flower, the Essex batsman and former Zimbabwe captain, has been named as assistant to Peter Moores, the newly appointed national coach. He replaces Matthew Maynard, who was the assistant to Moores's predecessor, Duncan Fletcher.

Moores, who has previously worked with Flower at the National Academy, welcomed his new assistant. "Andy will bring to the support staff a wealth of international experience as well as a clear understanding of the domestic game in England and Wales. He has worked at the National Academy for the past two seasons as a specialist batting coach and has done an excellent job. I am sure all the players will respond to his style and enjoy working with him."

With this, the 39-year-old Flower has called time on a first-class career spanning 20 years in which he scored 16,379 first-class runs at an average of 54.05. He'd spent the past five seasons with Essex, and was ruled out of the current season with a hip injury. One of Zimbabwe's greatest players, Flower played 63 Tests, scoring 4794 runs at 51.54 with 12 centuries and 160 dismissals as wicketkeeper.

"I'm proud of the days I spent in Zimbabwe and I'm proud of the fact that when we were given Test status we worked our hides off, sweating blood and tears trying to justify that promotion to Test and one-day international cricket", Flower said in a statement. "I look back fondly on the times that I spent with a lot of good people in Zimbabwe."

Flower was Zimbabwe's captain and scored 156 when they recorded their maiden Test victory, defeating Pakistan by an innings and 64 runs at Harare in 1995. He enjoyed a purple patch for two years starting in 1999 when he averaged 85 over 21 Tests. He grabbed the headlines when he scored 540 runs being dismissed only twice on a tour to India. Flower became the first wicketkeeper-batsman to record centuries in both innings of a Test match, scoring 142 and 199 not out against South Africa at Harare in 2001.

He was also the first wicketkeeper to go to the top of the international ratings for Test batsmen and was named as one of Wisden's Cricketers of the Year in 2002. Flower announced his retirement from international cricket after a turbulent 2003 World Cup, which started with an unprecedented protest by him and team-mate Henry Olonga over the "death of democracy" in Zimbabwe.

"A gentleman, an educator and all-round quality human being," said Ian Pont, Essex's fast bowling coach. "A huge loss for Essex, but he's just what England need."

Flower will join the England coaching staff before the first Test against the West Indies at Lord's, starting on May 17. While he will work primarily as a batting coach, he will also help Moores work with England's wicketkeepers.