Freddie, as he is fondly known in Britain, is being filmed as part of a documentary series on Sky television, “Flintoff: From Lord’s To The Ring”, which culminates in his professional boxing debut against American Richard Dawson.
For the past five months, the 34-year-old Flintoff has been trained by former world featherweight champion Barry McGuigan and his son, Shane, as he gears up for four two-minute rounds against Dawson. But he has received criticism that he is not taking boxing seriously and that Friday will be all about TV, not sport.
Flintoff insists his new career as a heavyweight boxer is for real and he is not motivated by the intention to make a documentary series about it. “I didn’t do this as a gimmick,” Flintoff said.
“There’s too much at stake. When you get in that ring and there’s someone coming at you, you’ve got to do it for real. Hopefully at the end of it people can say, ‘You know what? He’s had a go and done well there’, but that’s not my motivation behind it.”