30/11/2012 18:04 GMT | Updated 30/01/2013 05:12 GMT

Andrew 'Freddie' Flintoff v Richard Dawson: Former Cricketer Wins First Professional Fight (PICTURES)

Former England cricket captain Andrew Flintoff has won his first professional boxing fight against Richard Dawson in front of a lively crowd of 5,000 at the Manchester Arena.

“Freddie” recovered from a second-round knockdown to win the fight on the referee's scorecard 39-38 after four two-minute rounds.

His progress to become a professional boxer, which saw Flintoff shed 20kg in the build-up, was filmed for Sky for a three-part series.

The partisan cheered the former Lancashire sportsman to victory, despite the early set-back of hitting the canvass after a strong punch from his heavier American opponent in the second round.

Speaking after the fight, Flintoff, who has been training under the guidance of former champion Barry McGuigan and his son Shane, told Box Nation: "You mention the Ashes at international level, but as a personal achievement I think this is the best.”

"I wanted to experience it. The people around Manchester, and the county, supported me so well playing cricket. It was a no brainer to have it up here.

"The crowd made a massive difference. It's been amazing - humbling, really."

Andrew 'Freddie' Flintoff v Richard Dawson