Flintoff defies injury, carries England to a historic win

Flintoff defies injury, carries England to a historic win

England's Andrew Flintoff, centre, is congratulated by his team mates after bowling the wicket of Australia's Nathan Hauritz for 1 run. AP

It was England's first win over Australia at Lord's after 75 years as the hosts went 1-0 up in the series with three matches remaining.
At the start of the last day, Australia needed 209 runs to keep their no loss record at Lord's intact while England needed five wickets to break the jinx at the Mecca of cricket.

Michael Clarke scored a valiant 135 while Brad Haddin made 80, but it was tough for them to stop the fiery Flintoff, who generated some raw pace for his five for 92 and bowled out Australia for 406 in the second innings. Off-spinner Graeme Swann (4-87) picked up the most crucial wicket of Clarke to dash Australia hopes of revival.

Man of the Match Flintoff struck with his fourth ball, turning Haddin inside out and forcing an edge through to Paul Collingwood.
Swann then bagged the prized wicket of Clarke, who was foxed by the extra flight and was stunned to see his stumps rattled.
Nathan Hauritz survived just four balls before Flintoff castled his off-stumps with a full delivery and then produced a beauty that cut back in sharply to clear up Peter Siddle's wicket.

After completing his third five-wicket haul, Flintoff posed like the great Eric Cantona with his chest out, pointing towards the England balcony and appreciated the cheer from the fans for the last time at Lord's. Flintoff defied his knee injury, that forced him to retire after the end of the Ashes, and touched the 90 miles per hour regularly to rattle the Australian batting.

Mitchell Johnson defied the onslaught from the English bowlers with his quickfire 63 off 75 balls but the final assault from Swann ended his stay as Australia lost their grip on Lord's.
England made 425 in the first innings after skipper Andrew Strauss scored a magnificent 161 and then the home bowlers put on a splendid show to skittle out the Australians for 215. England declared their second innings at 311 for six, setting a 522-run target for Australia.

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