I am already sick and tired of the pious bleating accompanying the far-too-public shaming of Andrew Flintoff. OK, he had a few too many and did something daft. But not ‘got into a scrap and broke his bowling hand daft’. No. he fell off a pedalo. All sounds pretty funny to me. Thing is this. Yes, he broke team rules and he probably should have known better. He’s a senior member of the team and all that. But I’ve heard calls for him to be sent home. WHAT? And while we’re at it, why don’t we have Panesar shot for that misfield in the warm up, have Pietersen garroted for dropping a catch and perhaps bring home Collingwood for being too damn consistent. We do want to progress in this tournament don’t we? Flintoff hasn’t shamed his nation. Such talk is bollocks, frankly. He’s been a bit of a burke is all. Hands up who hasn’t been in their lives? Thought not.
Why do we insist that our sports stars wear concrete cloaks following a defeat, the better to bear their loss? What I want is for them to get over a bad game the best way they can so they’re up for slaughtering the next oppo. If that means getting pissed and falling off pedalos, so be it. So long as whatever they do doesn’t affect their performance, I couldn’t care less.
Leave Freddie alone, he’s already blushing. Give him back the vice-captaincy and let’s try and win this tournament if we possibly can.
FOOTNOTE: Cricket lost a great man yesterday. Bob Woolmer’s death was untimely and premature. Every fan of cricket knows what he brought to the game as player and then coach. the sport will feel his loss.