Stokes rules himself out of T20 World Cup title defence – Sport

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LONDON: England Test captain Ben Stokes has dominated himself out of the group’s T20 World Cup title defence, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) introduced on Tuesday.

The 32-yr-outdated will skip the match within the United States and the West Indies to verify he’s match to be a totally-fledged all-rounder in Test cricket.

“Opting out of the IPL (Indian Premier League) and the (T20) World Cup will hopefully be a sacrifice that enables me to be the all-rounder I wish to be for the foreseeable future,” Stokes stated in an ECB assertion.

Stokes’ withdrawal was one thing of a shock on condition that, when requested final month if he would take part within the T20 World Cup in June, he stated he had “not even thought of that however I’m accessible”.

It is known Stokes has not suffered any setbacks after briefly returning to bowling final month throughout a Test tour of India, the place England misplaced a 5-match sequence 4-1.

There is not any lingering discomfort in his left knee following surgical procedure in November.

But though he has lengthy been one of England’s main multi-format cricketers, Stokes has determined to prioritise his function as Test captain.

He hopes to have the ability to play a full function with each bat and ball throughout six Tests — three in opposition to the West Indies and three in opposition to Sri Lanka — within the upcoming house season.

The first Test in opposition to the West Indies at Lord’s begins on July 10, lower than two weeks after the June 29 T20 World Cup closing in Barbados.

“I’m working arduous and specializing in constructing my bowling health again as much as fulfil a full function as an all-rounder in all codecs of cricket,” Stokes stated.

“The current Test tour of India highlighted how far behind I used to be from a bowling level of view after my knee surgical procedure and 9 months with out bowling.

“I’m wanting ahead to enjoying for Durham within the County Championship earlier than the beginning of our Test summer season.”

‘FIRING ON ALL CYLINDERS’

ECB chief govt Richard Gould, chatting with reporters at The Oval later Tuesday, stated: “It was nice to see him (Stokes) bowl in India for a brief spell, however that most likely has simply instructed him how a lot he nonetheless must do in phrases of his physique.

“I believe it’s nice for English cricket he’s bought that ambition and he’s had his knee sorted.

“Now he’s going to make it possible for he’s again firing all cylinders as a result of he’s nonetheless a comparatively younger man in phrases of cricket.” Stokes was

a central determine as England gained the 2022 T20 World Cup in Australia.

The left-handed batsman’s 42 in opposition to Sri Lanka in Sydney took England into the knockout rounds, whereas his unbeaten 52 — his first fifty in worldwide T20 cricket — secured victory over Pakistan within the closing in Melbourne.

Stokes delayed an operation on a longstanding left knee downside to play in final yr’s 50-over World Cup in India, the place reigning champions England suffered an embarrassing exit earlier than the knockout phases after successful simply three of their 9 group video games.

After present process surgical procedure on the finish of final yr, Stokes was an ever-current in England’s defeat in India.

Following the Test sequence at house to the West Indies, England will tour Pakistan and New Zealand.

Published in Dawn, April third, 2024

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