World Cup 2019 Final, Ashes 2019 Headingley Test. and more recently T20 World Cup 2022 Finals are all specimens of a sedulous ability Ben Stokes possesses. In all these illustrations, the England team was tottering to get past the line, but when the circumstances become arduous, and when the time comes, Ben Stokes is a player who can completely change the course of events.
The southpaw had netted an immaculate 84 in the 2019 World Cup final at Lord’s, helping England win by overcoming New Zealand based on boundary perimeters. Recently during the T20 World Cup final against Pakistan, Ben Stokes orchestrated a scintillating 52* (49) that assisted England to its second ICC T20 World Cup title.
Ben Stokes has also been appointed as the captain of England’s test side under the coaching of former New Zealand batter Brendon McCullum. Hence, to manage his workload and owing to the burden of partaking in all three formats, the all-rounder announced his retirement from One-Day International cricket in July this year.
However, ahead of the 1st Test against Pakistan, Ben Stokes had moderately indicated that he might find his way back to the ODI squad before the inception of the World Cup 2023, which will be hosted by India.
“I Might Feel Towards a 50-over World Cup”, Ben Stokes
Stokes acknowledged in the build-up to the first Test against Pakistan in Rawalpindi that he wasn’t sure about the prospect of defending the World Cup he helped England win in dramatic fashion at Lord’s. Nonetheless, the Head of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), Rob Key, has attempted to persuade him to reconsider his retirement.
Ben Stokes quipped, “Rob Key pulled me to the side in the UAE and as soon as he said 50-over World Cup, I just walked away. I am just focusing on the white-ball series against Pakistan as of now.”
The Ben Stokes-led team travelled to Abu Dhabi on November 18 to play a three-day warm-up match and hold a couple of training sessions before the Pakistan tests. The right-arm-quick bowler Jofra Archer was also seen in action during the warm-up games as he marked his return to competitive cricket after almost 2 years.
Stokes on Returning to ODI Cricket
Further speaking on the feasibility of his return to One-day cricket, Ben Stokes said, “Who knows? It’s one of those things. Who knows how I might feel towards a 50-over World Cup at the time. Going to a World Cup is an amazing thing to do, to represent your country. But at the moment I’m not even thinking about that.”
Ben Stokes played his last one-day international against South Africa on 19th July this year. The next is all set to be held in India, and that could be another one of the fringe benefits for Stokes as he has phenomenal stats in the subcontinent.
The 31-year-old has stitched 255 runs in 6 innings in Indian conditions, including three-half centuries. Moreover, Ben Stokes only took 184 deliveries to reach that mark, and at an average of 51, Stokes could be a stumbling block for many teams.
As far as his bowling is concerned, the right-arm-medium Stokes has claimed 9 wickets in 6 innings. With a dot ball percentage of 42.2, Stokes’ best bowling figure is 3/34 which was recorded in Pune in 2021 against India.
Presently, Ben Stokes is leading England in a three-match test series against Pakistan, which will be followed by a two-match test series against New Zealand in February. Subsequently, England would then lock horns with Ireland for a four-day-test match at Lord’s before hosting their nemesis Australia for the Ashes in July. Amid all this, Stokes has also registered for the upcoming Indian Premier League mini-auction.