Flintoff in doubt for fifth one-dayer
Andrew Flintoff has given England further cause for concern ahead of the fifth one-dayer at Headingley after reporting "soreness" in his troublesome left ankle.
"Freddie's got a little bit of soreness in his ankle again," Paul Collingwood, his captain, said. "We'll have to wait and see about him in the next few hours. He's icing it up as usual but he has got a little bit of tenderness there. I'm sure he'll seek advice from the medical team."
Collingwood added that if Flintoff was ruled out, fast bowler Chris Tremlett would be his likely replacement. "It looks a pretty typical Headingley pitch and it looks as if it will be overcast," he said. "That would give the big lad Tremlett a chance of playing because he took a good couple of wickets in the middle of the innings at Edgbaston (where England won by 42 runs on August 27).
Flintoff appeared to turn his right ankle while fielding in England's thrilling three-wicket win at Old Trafford on Thursday, but yet again it is his recently-operated left ankle which concerns most. Since the operation, he has only bowled 55.5 overs for his county, Lancashire, and England, though did produce career-best figures of 5 for 56 at Bristol in the second ODI.
Indeed, Flintoff's bowling in the one-day series has been his major strength; as a batsman, he has made just 14 runs in three games.
"It's early days for him," Collingwood said, "and, as a unit, we're batting very well generally. We had a little bit of a hiccup in the last game but came through. It takes time at any level of cricket, never mind international cricket, to get back in touch. I'm sure he's one innings away."
The fifth of seven one-dayers gets underway on Sunday.