Flower, explaining his reasons for standing down, said in an ECB statement: “Following the recent very disappointing Ashes defeat it is clear to me that this is now time for England cricket, led by (captain) Alastair Cook, to rebuild… I do not feel like I am in a position to undertake that challenge.”

ECB managing director Paul Downton, who has been conducting a review of England’s tour Down Under, added: “We are at advance stages of negotiating a role for Andy within the ECB structure which will best utilise his undoubted skills.”

The Zimbabwean led England to number one in the world test rankings.

In December 2012, he ceded coaching control of England’s one-day teams to former England spinner Ashley Giles, who has been tipped as his successor with the Test side.

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