|Event:||England in Pakistan 2005/06|
DateLine: 18th December 2005
All-rounder Andrew Flintoff said staging a comeback against Pakistan in the one-day series to finish the year on top was crucial for his England teammates.
"I think it's important we finish off the year well," said Flintoff, ahead of the fourth one-day match here on Monday.
England need to win the next two matches to clinch the five-match series after poor performances left them trailing Pakistan 2-1. They were comprehensively beaten by 165 runs in Thursday's third match in Karachi.
The tourists, who won the Ashes against Australia in September this year, lost 2-1 in the preceding three-Test series.
"It will be disappointing if we finish with the defeat after all the hardwork we put in during this summer," said Flintoff, who turned 28 early this month.
England won the opening one-day match by 42 runs, but fared poorly in the second going down by seven wickets - with both matches played at Lahore.
England conceded their highest-ever total - 353-6 in 50 overs - and were bowled out for 188, equalling their worst-ever defeat in all one-day cricket.
They lost by the same margin against the West Indies at St. Vincent in
Flintoff said performances in the last two matches were disappointing.
"It's disappointing the way in which we played since winning the first match. As a batting group we have not really fired, we didn't post enough runs for the bowlers in the second game and in Karachi, Pakistan just batted well."
Flintoff, who starred in England's Ashes win with 402 runs and 24 wickets in five Tests, said Pakistan batted much better than England in Karachi.
"We were played out of the park (in Karachi) and Pakistan were excellent. We have to play well on Monday if we want to level the series and go one up on Wednesday," he said.
"We have got the energy .... We have come from behind before and played some good cricket over the past few years and we have to do it again. We have got two games and we have to win both, it's as simple as that.
"It will be nice to take something back with us."
(Article: Copyright © 2005 AFP)