Andrew Flintoff, hero of England’s epic Ashes victory against arch rivals Australia in 2005 has said that the current test side is better than the team he starred for.
The former all-rounder and England cricket legend was the star performer with both bat and ball when England won their first Ashes contest in two decades in 2005, and was also an integral member of the side which won again in 2009.
Flintoff is also adamant that England can go on to dominate international cricket, much like Australia in the noughhties and the great West Indian sides of the seventies and eighties.
He said, “”England are the best team in the world already. Not just in ranking, but also in strength, they have got everything.”
If England manages to beat India in the Third Test, starting at Edgbaston on 10 August, they will take over from them at the head of the international rankings and will be, for the first time in their history, the officially recognised number one Test nation in the world. They currently lead the four match series 2-0 after annihilating India in the last Test.
‘Freddy’ Flintoff went on to add, “This is a better side than the one we had in 2005. The strength of it and the depth is incredible. In 2005 we had 11 players who had a memorable few weeks and played at their best for a period, but we never played together again. This side have a squad. We’ve seen them replace players without blinking and it has made no difference to the performance and that has been happening for a while now”.
This matches the sentiments of Aussie spin legend, Shane Warne, who said after England’s latest emphatic victory on Monday, “England are improving and have a hunger for victory. They have a good team spirit and, as Andrew Strauss says, they can still improve. When Australia were on top and dominating world cricket, the things we wanted to do were score fast, take the game away from the opposition and intimidate the tail”. Which is precisely what England did in the last Test.