Saturday 21 October 2017

Freddie Flintoff: I was once run out for England because I couldn't move due to Viagra

Former England all-rounder says he could 'only hop' while at the crease after taking the sexual stimulant

Andrew Flintoff of England celebrates in the changing room following day five of the 2005 Ashes series
Andrew Flintoff of England celebrates in the changing room following day five of the 2005 Ashes series

Andrew Flintoff has revealed that he was once run out while batting for England because he could not move freely due to the lingering effects of Viagra.

Flintoff, who made his last appearance for England in 2009, has embarked on a wide-ranging celebrity career since retiring from cricket and is currently touring a stage show round the country.

Discussing life inside the England set-up, Flintoff tells a story during the show of taking Viagra in the middle of a Test match.

"It started with an article my ex sold to the News of the World," Flintoff told the Daily Mail. "It wasn’t very complimentary about my 'performance', if you get my meaning.

"So I decided I had to put that myth to bed even though I was in the middle of a Test match.

"I took three Viagra one night and didn’t realise how long they lasted. Trying to bat the next day in that state was not easy. I was run out, simply because I couldn’t move. I could only hop. It wasn’t worth it, either. Complete waste of time."

Despite his shows of bravado on the field, Flintoff also lifted the lid on his mental fragility, revealing that he occasionally sought help during his career.

However, it was only when talking to sports stars for a BBC documentary about depression in 2012 that he was then diagnosed with the illness.

"During that filming what I already knew deep down became very clear," he said. "With me it was most apparent at the 2007 World Cup.

"I took wickets and everybody was celebrating around me and I just felt nothing, absolutely nothing.

"I thought I was ill. I went to the team doctor. I had no idea what was wrong. I know now. I have seen experts about it and it was a relief to be told what it was."

When asked about whether he is still taking anti-depressants, Flintoff said: "I have at times, yeah. That’s fine. I haven’t for a while but I get checks. Everything is great at the moment, life’s good. Sometimes you feel something and you know it’s there again.

"But I know what it is and that’s reassuring. Usually it passes.

"I reckon when I started out, if someone had said something in the dressing room about depression it would have been used against them. Hopefully it wouldn’t be now."

Telegraph.co.uk

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