The fielding of Big Ben Stokes is out of this world after record five catches give England control of South Africa
- Ben Stokes took five catches for England in the first innings of Test in South Africa
- No English non-wicket keeper has ever taken five catches in innings before
- The all-rounder is now one of the best and most complete field players in the world
Ben Stokes is one of the best and most complete field players in cricket in the world. I can only really consider Chris Jordan as someone who comes somewhere near him.
Here Stokes took the most catches of every English player, five, except for a wicket-keeper in all innings in Test’s cricket history.
Then look at the strength of his arm and his field work in the depth. Combining everything makes it great and the complete field package.
Ben Stokes (C) became the first non-wicket-keeper in England to take five catches in an inning
When I played, we always said to the tickets: “Buy a ticket, otherwise you won’t win the lottery,” and what we meant by that was going into a garden. I know some slippers that would stay back, because if it didn’t wear it, they wouldn’t be blamed for dropping it.
But what Ben does is always buy that ticket and there is a lot from Sir Ian Botham in the way he does it.
He is not worried about looking stupid. He supports himself to catch something and when it goes down he knows that his teammates will fully support him.
There was a classic on day two here. Dwaine Pretorius converted Jimmy Anderson slightly less than Stokes in the second slip. It may have been worn, but it was a difficult one.
The all-rounder recovered from missing a Dwaine Pretorius lead to catch him immediately
So Ben immediately moved one and a half feet closer and Pretorius drove a ride and then went to him seriously, but he made the catch look so easy.
People pay their money to watch players doing something they can only dream of and there is no better example of that than the catch Stokes took in the deep against South Africa at the start of the World Cup last year in The Oval . Remember the reaction of the crowd behind him. It has made their day.
When I look at England one day, I always know where Eoin Morgan expects the ball because it is where Stokes plays. It’s not just bats and bowling that make Stokes such an incredible all-rounder – it’s also his fielding and catch.
Stokes dives on Sunday to snatch last man Anrich Nortje from bowling Jimmy Anderson