Andrew “Freddie” Flintoff said he was happier to land his new Top Gear job than when he was first picked to play cricket for England.
The former cricketer will host the BBC motoring show from next year with Take Me Out presenter Paddy McGuinness and current Top Gear co-host Chris Harris. They are taking the steering wheel from Matt LeBlanc, who earlier this year announced he was leaving after four series.
Discussing the news on his BBC Radio 5 Live podcast Flintoff, Savage And The Ping Pong Guy, Flintoff said he had no idea whether he would get the job after auditioning some time ago.
“I had a car full of kids, and Rachael (wife Rachael Wools Flintoff) was driving,” said the 40-year-old.
“I was in the back, actually. I got out of the car to take the call, and I kid you not, it was like getting the phone call to be picked for England.
“It was a very similar emotion. Even in some ways more… I was happier!
“Because, when I got picked for England, I was a kid. I was 20, and it was out of the blue. Where this time, it was, ‘Come on!’
“So, I can’t wait!”
Flintoff said the show is his dream job.
“I’m not just saying this,” he said. “Genuinely, one job in television to do, apart from hosting Question Time, it’d be Top Gear.”
BBC Radio 5 Live’s Flintoff, Savage And The Ping Pong Guy podcast is on BBC Sounds www.bbc.co.uk/5live.