In 1996, two weeks before the Euro 96 football championships there was a furore after it was revealed that a group of England players had got drunk on a trip to Hong Kong. Remember, this was two weeks before the Championships started.
So why is the response to Andrew Flintoff's drunken escapades so muted ? Yes, the tabloids have had a go at him, and rightly so, but I am so tired and fed up of people excusing Flintoff because "that's the way he is". If a highly paid footballer was doing what he did, and lets put it in to perspective, he went out and got drunk just hours before an England match and just hours after he was bowled out for a duck and England lost, then I believe that the footballer would have been absolutely vilified, not only by the press, but by the public at large.
Flintoff has done nothing to stake a claim to the title of "the world's best all-rounder" since the end of the Ashes series two years ago and seems as well known now for his many endorsements as he does for any cricket he plays.
Let's stop making excuses for him. Unless he starts to reproduce his previous form with a bat and ball, he should be dropped for a good while and be made to earn his place back in the team.