Quiet Ashes celebrations for Flintoff

Andrew Flintoff enjoyed a quiet beer with his dad after helping England regain the Ashes.

All-rounder Flintoff played a crucial role in his final Test, running out Australia captain Ricky Ponting, as England earned a 197-run victory.



The 31-year-old admits he "celebrated hard" after England's last Ashes win but last night's post-series party was "pretty low key by my standards".



"We had a room in the hotel for friends and family and celebrated a memorable day - it wasn't too crazy," he told a press conference today.



"I remember 2005 - contrary to popular belief - 2005 was fantastic, it almost snuck up on us.



"I lived for the moment then and celebrated hard. But this time it was something which I savoured.



"It was quite nice - all the families came over.



"I sat with my wife and my kids, my dad who has done so much for me throughout my career.



"I was able to have a beer with my dad. It was very different but in a lot of ways far more enjoyable."



A knee injury means Flintoff will only play one-day and Twenty20 cricket in the future.



Flintoff revealed that winning the final Test inside four days means he will undergo exploratory surgery tonight rather than tomorrow as was planned.



He said: "The fortunate thing about winning a day early is that they have brought my op forward.



"I can get that done tonight - then it's all about getting fit."



He added: "The harsh reality is now that I need to get my knee sorted out. It's made me more determined to get back to playing fit.



"Last week was a hard one for me, lots of talks with the surgeon but the incentive is wearing the three lions and I desperately want to wear them again, albeit in one-day matches and Twenty20s."



Flintoff has no definite timescale for his return but would like to be involved in the one-day internationals in Bangladesh next February

"The surgeon has a good idea of what he's going to find. I think it'd be wrong for me to speculate on that. Then like I say the rehab... we'll see when I wake up after the anaesthetic and see where I'm at with it.



"Realistically I think before Christmas I'm going to struggle.



"Obviously I've retired from Test cricket but there's a tour to Bangladesh which I desperately want to be involved in. So realistically I think that could be my first cricket after this Test."



As for his immediate goal when he regains fitness, Flintoff stressed: "I want to be the best one-day cricketer in the world and I can set my sights on that.



Flintoff urged the team to build on this Ashes success and establish themselves as the top side in world cricket.



"What I think we need to do is, if there's any lesson to learn from 2005 now, it's to go for domination, to try to get number one in the world.



"We've got the talent, we've got the side to do it. It's just a case of believing it and putting it into practice."



The 31-year-old Lancastrian is confident he is leaving the England Test set-up in a healthy state.



"One comforting thing is, having seen yesterday and the past five Test matches, is that I'll disappear and the England side will be in good hands," he said.



"The likes of (Jonathan) Trott coming in and everybody's forgetting about KP. Our best player has not played the bulk of this Test series. So the future of the side is in good hands."



Flintoff paid particular tribute to captain and England's man of the series Andrew Strauss.



"I think in a roundabout way we got to the right man for the job," he said.



"There was lot of speculation (about who would be captain) between me and him for the last Ashes series in 2006/07.



"I said before, I probably took one for the team there. We got beat but it's enabled Straussy through different circumstances to take over.



"Straussy leads by example, not just with his batting but with the way he conducts himself. He's a popular lad.



"I'm sure in four or five years' time when someone else is sat in this chair being asked what Andrew Strauss was like as a captain... he was a belter."

Flintoff painted a bright future for England, while acknowledging he will miss not being involved in the Test team any more.

He said: "There's no reason why we can't be the best in the world. We're a very talented team - but we can't get carried away.



"I loved playing Test cricket - it feels strange talking about it in the past tense.



"Having the opportunity to play Tests at my home ground (Old Trafford) and walk out at The Oval should never be taken lightly.



"It's one of those things you don't want to end - but like all things it comes to an end at some point and I couldn't ask for a better way for it to finish.



"To win the Ashes twice is everything. I'm proud to be English and represent my country and I feel very fortunate to do it on and off for the last 10, 11 years or so."



Flintoff admitted winning this time round was very different to the celebrations which followed the 2005 success.

"Since 2005 I had two and a half years trying to get fit so getting the chance to play in the Ashes was one thing but winning it was very special," he said.



"Afterwards I had a moment to myself and then I had my mum and dad there, and my wife and kids. It was different.



"It's a feeling of being quite pleased with myself."



Flintoff's decision to retire from Test cricket has led to speculation other members of the side could also call it quits in the longest form of the game, including close friend Steve Harmison.



The Durham fast bowler has had issues with touring in the past but Flintoff believes he should carry on for a while yet.



"If I was Steve Harmison and could bowl like that I would keep going," he added.



"If you ask any batsman in the world 'who do you not want to face' it would be Steve Harmison.



"He could end up being one of the greats for England.



"He could go on to be our leading wicket-taker of all time. If he wants to, there is still a lot more to come."



Flintoff also backed Stuart Broad to thrive in the all-rounder role.



Broad was named the man of the match at Oval for his five-wicket burst in Australia's first innings and Flintoff is confident the Nottinghamshire star is destined for big things.



"He's better than me in a lot of ways," he said.



"He's only 23 and he's performing at the highest level. Broady has a lot of potential but he's already showing it.



"Changing the course of the game at such a young age is very special.



"We have also seen signs of what he can do with the bat. He's not the finished article but he has huge potential. He could bat at number three in the future."



Suggested Topics
News
Emma Watson has become the latest target of the 4Chan nude hacking scandal
peopleThreats follows actress' speech on feminism and equality at the UN
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
Life and Style
tech
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Geena Davis, founder and chair of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media
tv
News
Alan Bennett criticised the lack of fairness in British society encapsulated by the private school system
peopleBut he does like Stewart Lee
Sport
John Terry, Frank Lampard
footballChelsea captain sends signed shirt to fan whose mum had died
Arts and Entertainment
Rita Ora will replace Kylie Minogue as a judge on The Voice 2015
tv
Life and Style
tech
Life and Style
Alan Turing, who was convicted of gross indecency in 1952, was granted a royal pardon last year
life
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
Life and Style
life
Arts and Entertainment
Tennis player Andy Murray's mum Judy has been paired with Anton du Beke for Strictly Come Dancing. 'I'm absolutely delighted,' she said.
tvJudy Murray 'struggling' to let Anton Du Beke take control on Strictly
Life and Style
Vote with your wallet: the app can help shoppers feel more informed about items on sale
lifeNew app reveals political leanings of food companies
Sport
David Moyes and Louis van Gaal
football
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits