- India triumphed by 434 runs, the largest margin of victory in their history.
- Ben Stokes now wants to ensure England don’t enter a ‘downward spiral’
Ben Stokes insisted on Sunday night that he has no regrets about England’s crushing third Test defeat and wants his Bazballers to continue doing it their way.
The England captain admitted that Joe Root’s ill-timed reverse ramp that led to a first innings collapse was the turning point in what became a remarkable turnaround and a victory for India by a whopping 434 runs, the biggest margin of victory in its history.
But Stokes now wants to ensure England do not enter a “downward spiral” ahead of the final two matches of this five-Test series in Ranchi and Dharamsala and has targeted a 3-2 victory, just as he did when they were two . in the Ashes last summer.
And there was a complaint from Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum to level with umpire Jeff Crowe after another controversial DRS decision against England when Zak Crawley was declared lbw despite “the ball not touching the stumps”.
“I won’t look back with any regrets,” Stokes said after the biggest setback of his transformative spell as captain. ‘We made our game with the best intentions, but sometimes your execution is not how you want it to be. It may be your downfall, but so be it.
“Joe’s dismissal was definitely a turning point because he went out but scored almost 12,000 runs, so I think we can leave the decision-making and the ‘why’ to him.
England collapsed with the bat again as they lost the third Test against India by 434 runs.
But Ben Stokes now wants to ensure England do not enter a “downward spiral”.
‘It’s not a shot you necessarily see Test match players play, but who am I to question a guy who has 30 hundreds? I think he knows what he’s doing.
‘Annulling this match would not do justice to the professionalism of the players. We can’t let disappointment eat us. If you overthink things, you can fall into a downward spiral. It’s about what we do now in the next two games.
‘We do not need to moderate our methods. Our batting line-up is full of international class players and we give them the freedom to play what is in front of them. We just have to look at our execution.’
England are increasingly unhappy with the technology used in this series and Stokes wants the DRS umpire’s decision removed.
“We wanted some clarity on Zak’s decision because we showed it to the match referee and the ball wasn’t hitting the stumps,” Stokes said. “He came back and said he was hitting, but the screening and images showed that was not the case. I don’t know what to do with that.
England captain admitted Joe Root’s ill-timed reverse ramp was the turning point
“I’m not saying, nor will I ever say, that DRS is the reason we lost this game, but you just want something that’s consistent. I think we should get rid of the umpire’s decision. If he’s hitting the stumps, then is hitting the stumps. Then it will be a level playing field.’
England fans were encouraged when Stokes admitted he was considering bowling again, starting in Ranchi on Friday, following his knee operation last year.
“I have tried my first dish 100% and my knee feels good,” he added. ‘As a person, I like to rush too much. “I’m not saying yes, I’ll bowl, but I’m also not saying no right now.”