Former England all-rounder Freddie Flintoff has come out of retirement to join the Lancashire Lightning’s squad for this year’s T20 Blast campaign.
The 36-year-old never thought he would get the chance to play competitive cricket again, having last done so almost five years ago.
But the Preston-born ace has been training with Lancashire in recent months and is now relishing his opportunity to return.
“I’m really honoured to be part of Lancashire once again,” he said.
“It is something that I never thought would happen but, after training with the squad over the last few months, I am really happy that they have invited me to play.
“I have worked really hard to get back to my fittest and I hope that we have a successful summer. I’m just glad that I can be part of it.”
LCCC cricket director Mike Watkinson said: “We are delighted to have Fred involved once again at the club. He is Lancashire through and through and his record for both club and country speaks for itself.”
In his years away from cricket, Flintoff has explored other options - including one bout of professional boxing.
He represented England in 79 Tests, 141 one-day internationals and seven Twenty20 games. He also made 80 first-class appearances for the Red Rose, scoring 4,042 runs at 35.14 and taking 92 wickets at 29.16.
Flintoff’s Lancashire Twenty20 record consists of 16 games, averaging 13.94 with the ball and 29.64 with the bat, with a high score of 93 against Derbyshire in 2009.