England news August 15, 2011

Flower to miss Ireland game

ESPNcricinfo staff

Andy Flower will miss his first match since taking over as England team director when he sits out the one-day international against Ireland in Dublin. The match takes place three days after the final Test against India, at The Oval, and Richard Halsall, the fielding coach, will be in charge of the team.

When Flower signed his new deal with the ECB in May it was widely believed that the subject of him taking a break from the demands of the job was considered although nothing was written into the contract. In many ways Flower's role is more intense than the players' because he has to plot and plan for the next challenge and is involved with all three formats.

The only time Flower has missed any of England's cricket since taking the top job were the second and third days of the first Test against Australia, at Brisbane, when he underwent surgery to remove a melanoma from below his right eye. Halsall took charge of the team in Flower's absence which gave a clear indication of the contingency plans in place.

Flower will rejoin the squad ahead of the Twenty20 international against India, at Old Trafford, on August 31 which is then followed by five one-day internationals. Two additional Twenty20s have now been added to the end of the season against West Indies, to help fulfil contractual obligations following the loss of the Stanford games, before the team fly to India for a one-day series in early October.

England then have their longest break of recent times before Christmas when they aren't in action during November and December. However, after the festive season the demands increase again with a full tour against Pakistan in UAE followed by a short series in Sri Lanka. It remains to be seen whether Flower fits in any further breaks before the start of another full summer in 2012.

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  • Dummy4 on August 17, 2011, 8:09 GMT

    India is going to regain its top slot in Tests in the next series itself. One bad series had cost India the top spot going to ENG. But remember the present Eng team never performed well except Eng,Aussie,SA conditions and thier next 3 series are against the subcontinent teams at thier home grounds... The strike bowlers of Eng team are poor performers here. India is better than Eng in the last couple of years barring this series.. both home and away...

  • John on August 17, 2011, 3:55 GMT

    Flower deserves a rest. It's hard work getting the players ready to beat the teams whose supporters seem to be in here wondering where it all went wrong for them.

  • Tanmay on August 17, 2011, 3:51 GMT

    @India only won the world cup as they played at home on pitches that suited them. Give them anything other than flat dead pitches and they cannot cope ---- then why did not England win in 1975,1979 & 1999...no team has won WC in their home conditions...India did....keep your jealousies out...India will come back with a bang & reclaim its number 1 ranking...what about England...can they win outside England ???

  • Randolph on August 17, 2011, 0:03 GMT

    @YorkshirePudding, no Aussies would ever want to play for England anyway mate, even though we do get on quite well with South Africans; they could complain about the weather over there collectively!

  • Mark on August 16, 2011, 14:01 GMT

    India only won the world cup as they played at home on pitches that suited them. Give them anything other than flat dead pitches and they cannot cope. Australia are still the best ODI side but, who cares, Test cricket is still the best form of the game - as the bowlers have to try to take wickets to win the match rather than just restrict the batsmen from scoring.

    One match off for Flower is hardly like going on holiday for 3 weeks in the sun now is it? As for the stupid jibes about England's South African born players - boring - get over it and play better cricket yourselves rather than worrying about who is playing for England!

    As for Ireland - I agree the only way they will improve is by having proper ODI series against full nations rather than the odd game here or there.

  • Valavan on August 16, 2011, 13:55 GMT

    peace yorkshire pudding, when these indians won T20 WC in 2007 , they were jumping they are T20 no.1 and so, but now they are shattered in T20, ODI is the only format, they have won a WC recently and think they are consistent forgetting the fact WC was held in India.

  • Jason on August 16, 2011, 12:19 GMT

    @chapathishot, I seem to have hit a nerve, however, I've never claimed that England are the best team. As with 90% of England fans beating Australia (especially in Australia) means more than being placed Number one. as for the world cup do you really think I care who the holders are its a tin pot trophy for a tin pot competition.

  • Unni on August 16, 2011, 11:32 GMT

    @YorkshirePudding:Being No 3 does not mean you were the best then why the fuss by england from time they beat australia as the best test team ,They were also number three till the last test.And how many world cups England won cause I cant remember

  • Jason on August 16, 2011, 11:00 GMT

    @RandyOz, well he certainly wont be visting Oz looking for quality players, considering the dross played with during the ashes. @Cpt.Meanster, Yep India are he best ODI team, whats thier ranking in the ODI charts...thats right 3rd, first time I new that being 3rd made you the best.

  • John on August 16, 2011, 7:30 GMT

    @ Falguni Rath - that was funny like 2 years ago. Kinda getting old by now.

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