Ben Stokes leaves door open for possible U-turn on ODI retirement

Ben Stokes has left the door open to a potential turnaround in his ODI retirement for England’s defense of the 50-over World Cup next winter.

The all-rounder, currently in Pakistan captaining the Test side on their first tour of the country in 17 years, retired from one-day cricket in the summer to concentrate on the other two international formats. In doing so, he said managing his workload in a complicated schedule was “unsustainable”, and urged administrators to better master the match list to prevent other multi-format cricketers from making a similar decision.

However, following England’s T20 World Cup win in Australia earlier this month, of which Stokes played a key role with 52 not-aways – a first half century in the format – to take his side to victory in the final against Pakistan, limited overs coach Matthew Mott floated the prospect of Stokes going back on the decision. “When he spoke to me about his ODI retirement one of the first things I said was I would support whatever decision he made, but I told him not to stop necessarily, he just couldn’t get 50 overs to play.” for a while,” Mott said.

When he entered the tournament, Stokes had not played a T20I since March 2021, and given the way the 31-year-old performed – 110 runs at an average of 36.66 and six wickets – the consensus is that he has a similar peripheral role could play ahead of the 2023 50-over World Cup in India, especially as ODIs are arguably his best format, with averages of 38.98 and 42.39 (and 74 dismissals), with bat and ball respectively.

Speaking ahead of the first Test against Pakistan, Stokes revealed director of men’s cricket Rob Key had floated the idea of ​​an ODI return to him at Abu Dhabi training camp last week. Though dismissive at the time, the player from the 2019 final dropped out to close the fight.

“Keysy pulled me over in the UAE and as soon as he said ’50-over World Cup’ I just walked out,” said Stokes.

“Who knows? Right now while I’m here my focus is solely on this series (against Pakistan). But it’s one of those things. But who knows how I’d feel facing a World Cup at that point. To a Going to the World Cup is a great thing to do, to represent your country. But at the moment I’m not even thinking about that.”

At the time of writing, Stokes faces a very front-heavy 2023. These three Pakistan Tests will see him head into the new year ahead of a two-Test tour of New Zealand in February. He will then move on to the Indian Premier League after introducing himself for the draft set to take place on December 16. On his return from the IPL, he will head straight into a four-day test against Ireland for a five-match Ashes series that ends at the end of July. There are also four T20I’s shoehorn at the end of the home season.

If he sticks to his ODI retirement, the World Cup, which kicks off in October, would see him turn his punches ahead of a five-game series in the Caribbean in December. If he changed his mind there would be six ODIs in the summer, evenly split between New Zealand and Ireland to get back into the 50-over groove.

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Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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