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Flintoff may quit boxing

Andrew Flintoff

London: Andrew Flintoff’s professional boxing career is likely to be limited to last Friday’s debut appearance after the former England cricketer hinted strongly that he would now be seeking challenges elsewhere.

“I know that I gave it everything I have and it has worked out well for me, when it might not have done,” Flintoff said. “You have to work at anything in life. This has given me the drive and determination to apply to whatever I do next. Whatever that is, I know now I can push on and when it gets tough I can plough through.”

Flintoff overcame American Richard Dawson at Manchester Arena on Friday night, surviving a second-round knock-down to win a narrow points decision.

In an interview with a tabloid, he said: “I proved a lot of things in this fight, I have had a few personal battles, and every time I walked through the ropes during training it has been a battle. I don’t want the adulation of an open-top bus tour, but it has been a lifestyle change for me and also a change of path in my life.”

Flintoff, who shed over three stone during his four-and-a-half-month preparation for the bout, also hit back at critics of his move into boxing.

“People are protective of the sport, and I can understand that. I would be the same about cricket. I am not sure some of the criticism has been for the correct reasons, there seems to have been a bit of headline stealing and a chance for people to get their name in the papers.

“Some of the criticism I can understand, people want to respect this sport, that’s fine. But some of the cheap swipes I can’t be bothered with. This was never about degrading boxing. We wanted to do it properly and show boxing for the fantastic sport it is. At times boxers don’t get the credit they deserve.”