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Flintoff's future as captain questioned by British media

December 19, 2006 11:33 IST
Andrew Flintoff's future as England captain was questioned by British media on Tuesday following his side's humbling Ashes defeat in Australia.

Flintoff was chosen as captain for the series ahead of Andrew Strauss with regular skipper Michael Vaughan ruled out due to injury.

"Is it over for Fred's captaincy?," said the Daily Express, suggesting Flintoff could be cast as a lame-duck skipper for the rest of the Ashes series if Vaughan was reinstated as one-day captain when the squad is announced on Thursday.

The Times stuck with the captaincy theme under the back-page headline: "Vaughan will rush back as captain for one-day series".

Most papers ridiculed England's performance in losing the first three Tests to Ricky Ponting's Australia.

The front page of the Daily Telegraph's sport section said: "England have been made to look like dingbats but Ponting leads a magnificent team".

"England waited 16 years and 15 days to regain the Ashes in the glorious summer of 2005. The historic urn was in England's possession for just one year, 96 days and 12 hours and Ricky Ponting's team needed only 86 hours and 40 minutes playing time to snatch the Ashes back," the Telegraph added.

More criticism for Flintoff came from the Guardian which said: "Misfiring Flintoff sums up England's Ashes".

A sub-heading beside a column written by former England seamer Mike Selvey read: "Flintoff blazed yesterday but his batting has gone to pot and he has lost the art of wicket-taking".

"Perthetic", was the back-page headline in popular tabloid The Sun.

"Freddie Flintoff's Perth flops handed back the urn to Australia after just 15 days of Test cricket Down Under, the shortest defence in history," the Sun said.

Source:
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