Former England allrounder Andrew Flintoff recalled a sledging incident against Shoaib Akhtar but admitted it didn’t end up well for him. England were touring Pakistan for a three-Test series back in 2005 and during the second Test in Faisalabad, Akhtar repeatedly tried to get into Flintoff’s skin by calling him fat. Also Read - Virat Kohli Was a 'Brat' Like Me, Shoaib Akhtar Lauds India Captain's Spectacular Transformation Into Modern Day Legend
That is when Flintoff decided to give it back to the former Pakistan quick but the result of that verbal duel didn’t isn’t the allrounder’s best memory. Also Read - Shoaib Akhtar to Replace Misbah-ul-Haq as Pakistan Cricket Team's Chief Selector, Former Pacer Says 'Discussions On' With PCB
“Listen to this, I got feelings. He (Shoaib) kept having a go at me. He kept calling me ‘fat’. Fat this, fat that. I am not having this; I am thinking I am going to nip this in the b***. So, as I walked in, I said, Shoaib, it’s all right, you look like Tarzan, but you bowl like Jane,” Flintoff said on TalkSport. Also Read - MS Dhoni Retires: Shoaib Akhtar to Shahid Afridi, How Pakistani Cricketers Paid Tribute to CSK Skipper | POSTS
“It haunted me straight away. I walked out to bat, I think 1st or 2nd ball, my off-stump was cart-wheeling back as he knocked it over. Then, as I walked off, he gave me a big ‘OOOHHHH’.”
Never shy of having a word or two with the opposition has never quite worked in Flintoff’s favour. Former captain Sourav Ganguly’s famous incident where he took his shirt off after India secured a famous win at the Natwest Series final in 2002 was actually in response of Flintoff’s over the top celebration in Mumbai a year before. As per his biography Being Freddie, Flintoff, in an extract, had mentioned how Ganguly simply wouldn’t work out and how it was a struggle with him during their days together at Lancashire.
Five years later, Flintoff would again get into an exchange with Yuvraj Singh at 2007’s T20 World Cup before the former left-hander responded by hitting six sixes off Stuart Broad.