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Key: Flintoff would be ‘excellent’ England head coach

Andrew Flintoff has been tipped as a future England head coach by director of men’s cricket Rob Key.

Key has been integral in offering the 2005 Ashes hero a path back from showbusiness to elite sport after the former captain suffered serious facial injuries in a car crash while filming television show Top Gear.

Flintoff will be leading Northern Superchargers in The Hundred this summer and has been inked in to assist Matthew Mott at the T20 World Cup in June. Both tournaments are live on Sky Sports.

“Without question, I think he would be an excellent head coach,” Key told the Daily Telegraph.

“He will be a worthy candidate going forward. When that time comes and whoever is in this job, and it might be outside of my time, they would be stupid not to look at him.

“For all the things he has done, cricket is always the thing he goes back to. Like all of us, it is the thing we know better than anything else and the thing we love.

“It is almost like he has no choice. It is what he thinks about the most after his family.”

During The Hundred Draft on Thursday, Flintoff’s first pick was West Indies’ batter Nicholas Pooran alongside Australia’s Daniel Sams, Surrey quick Tom Lawes, and Durham’s Graham Clark.

Adil Rashid was awarded his 100th T20 International cap by Andrew Flintoff last year
Image: Adil Rashid was awarded his 100th T20 International cap by Andrew Flintoff last year

Flintoff accepted his friend Key’s invitation to attend games during last year’s Ashes series and has since accepted mentoring roles with England’s white-ball side as well as the England Lions and U19s.

With fans and players alike welcoming the return of one of the country’s most popular sporting figures of recent times, Flintoff is already being spoken about as a possible successor.

Key praised Flintoff’s ability to understand the highs and lows of international cricket and sees him as a natural working with the the current crop.

“Flintoff is a leader like [Ben] Stokes. He is not going to need to learn leadership qualities,” said Key.

“He has those in abundance, which is what you need at the top level. He has that empathy that Stokes has as well as being a great player.

“He knows what it is like to nick off and to struggle. All these things as a leader, your interactions with people, mean you can impact people in a positive or negative way with everything you do. Fred [Flintoff] is aware of that, and not many are aware of that, and he understands how to use that gift with people.”

England beat Pakistan to win the the 2022 Men's T20 World Cup in Australia (PA Images)
Image: England beat Pakistan to win the the 2022 Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia

Defending champions England have been grouped with Australia for the Men’s T20 World Cup in June and will begin their defence on June 4 against Scotland in Barbados.

Jos Buttler’s side – who won the 2022 T20 World Cup in Australia after beating Pakistan in the final – have also been grouped with Namibia, Scotland and Oman.

Sky Sports brings you all the action from England’s upcoming cricket games including the T20 World Cup, two Test series against West Indies and Sri Lanka at home and Australia’s white-ball tour.

You can also watch The Hundred live in full on Sky Sports from July 23 to August 18. Stream cricket and more NOW.

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