Ashes: Strauss says Poms must play to win

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London, Aug.20 (ANI): England cricket captain Andrew Strauss has said that he is prepared to risk losing Andy Flintoff's farewell Test to try to win back the Ashes.

Asked if he was prepared to risk losing the Ashes to force the pace against Australia, Strauss replied:

"We've got to. It's a simple as that. Every Test match you play you go out there with the intention of winning the Test.

The way you win Test matches is to gain the advantage on the first two or three days and then push for victory on the final two days. You don't win it on day one. We need to play smart cricket in the first half of the game," Strauss said.

With the forecast of showers for the first two days, the chances of spinner Nathan Hauritz playing has diminished. Seamer Stuart Clark is now favoured to hang on to his spot as part of the four-pronged pace attack that Australia used successfully in the fourth Test in Headingley, reports The Daily Telegraph.

Strauss believes that Flintoff's farewell Test could become the perfect finish to an epic career.

"It's kind of the perfect storm, it's his last game so he is going to be completely motivated to go out on a high. It's a must-win Ashes Test match, at home and a full house. The script is written perfectly. He can lift the others with his performances. For a big game like this it is a massive plus to have him in the side," Strauss said. (ANI)

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