London, May 23 (IANS) Andrew Strauss has taken a summer-long break from his role as director of England cricket with Andy Flower stepping into the role as a temporary replacement.
The former England captain’s wife, Ruth, was diagnosed with cancer last December and is due to begin new treatment from Friday, due to which Strauss has been granted a period of compassionate leave to offer his full support.
“My wife was diagnosed with cancer in December,” Strauss said in a statement on Tuesday.
“We are very lucky, she has been very well up to now, although she is starting a new treatment on Friday which is going to more challenging for her, and as such I am going to be stepping back from my day-to-day duties while that treatment is going on.
“On a day-to-day basis, Andy Flower is going to be stepping in for me over the course of the summer. We all know about his qualities and his experience of both England and English cricket and he will fill in my shoes very adequately.
“I look forward to returning and grabbing the reins again. But, at this period of time, my focus has to be on supporting Ruth and my family at a challenging time for us,” he added.
Since standing down as England’s Test team director after the 2013-14 Ashes whitewash, Flower, the former Zimbabwe skipper, has been operating in a number of roles behind the scenes, first as the head of elite coaching before taking over as head coach of the Lions set-up.