1 Jul 2009

England cricket camp enforces crackdown on player punctuality

6:28 pm on 1 July 2009

After failing to make a contest of the last Ashes cricket series, skipper Andrew Strauss says the English camp has been forced to launch a crackdown on player punctuality.

The captain was grilled in a media conference on serial offender Andrew Flintoff who missed the team bus at last weekend's pre-Ashes team bonding camp in Belgium.

Strauss admitted that several players had been tardy in the build-up to the Ashes, not a good sign for the home side before next week's opening Ashes Test in Cardiff.

England team managing director Hugh Morris refused to deny the Flintoff incident was alcohol-related as the late start on the weekend revived memories of the infamous Fredalo affair.

The Lancashire player was stripped of the vice captaincy during the 2007 World Cup in the Caribbean as punishment for a late night drinking spree that ended with him having to be rescued from a capsized pedalo.

Flintoff is renowned for his love of a drink and was also the worse for wear at a morning practice session as captain of the Ashes side humiliated 5-0 in Australia in 2006-07.