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from Left field:

And so the search for a new Flintoff begins…

In the wake of England’s Ashes triumph over Australia, a huge question awaits...can England find a replacement for Andrew Flintoff?

He has been the scourge of the opposition for so long. His importance was underlined in this series where despite being half-fit he managed to knock over the tourists at Lord’s to claim five wickets and even ran out Australian captain Ricky Ponting at the Oval (which he said on Monday was probably the first time he’s ever run somebody out).

Flintoff (79 tests, 3,845 runs, 226 wickets) has been the heartbeat of the England team over the past five years and his departure will leave a gaping hole in the setup.

Nevertheless, the biggest mistake England and the media could make would be to conduct a search for the ‘next Andrew Flintoff’.