England in a tizzy after Flower's surgery

Flower missed the second and third days’ play of the first Ashes Test to have a melanoma removed from his right cheek.

“All of us have had a bit of a scare on it. We did get tested recently but we may need second opinions on that,” Strauss said after scoring his first Ashes Test century in Australia on Sunday’s fourth day.

“It does put everything into perspective, and how quickly Andy had to get this stuff done showed that’s not something to be messed around with.” Strauss said Flower’s enforced absence did not greatly upset the England’s team routine. “I don’t think it made a huge amount of difference, to be honest. Probably the dressing room was a bit more light-hearted while he wasn’t there,” he quipped.

“You want things to be as normal as possible in big Test matches, so when he was away for a few days it was a bit odd, I must admit, and it’s great to have him back.” A team spokesman said Flower’s problem developed on Friday and it was decided minor surgery was the right course of action.

“He went off for a routine check and they said they felt it prudent to take it out,” he said. Reports said that Flower visited the Brisbane clinic only after prompting from the team’s Australian security adviser Reg Dickason.

Dickason had previously arranged a check-up on his own sun-damaged skin and advised Flower to do the same amid concerns over a lesion under his right eye, reports said.

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