23 Jul 2009

Pietersen's absence bound to give Australian cricketers a boost

6:53 pm on 23 July 2009

The second test man of the match Andrew Flintoff fears Kevin Pietersen's absence for the three remaining cricket tests against Australia, could destroy England's chances of regaining the Ashes.

Pietersen will be sidelined for six weeks after surgery on an Achilles injury which had troubled him throughout the first two Tests.

Pierterson had hoped pain-killers would allow him to help England build on the 1-nil series lead but the injury's deteriorated and Pietersen's agreed with medical advice to have immediate surgery.

Flintoff, who is struggling with injury problems of his own, conceded Pietersen's injury may give the Australians a major boost.