Ben Stokes returns to England ODI squad ahead of World Cup

World Cup

LONDON: Ben Stokes, England’s Test captain and hero of their 2019 World Cup triumph, has reversed his decision to retire from 50-over cricket ahead of the team’s defence of their title in India this autumn, and will make his comeback for the men’s ODI squad in the forthcoming series against New Zealand.

Stokes, 32, stood down from the 50-over format last summer, claiming that it was unsustainable for him to give his best across all three formats of the game, and that the “England shirt deserves nothing less” than 100% commitment, according to Cricinfo.

However, given his starring roles in the finals of both the 50-over World Cup in 2019 and the 20-over version in Melbourne last November, Stokes’ big-match temperament was an asset that England were loath to do without, with both Matthew Mott, the white-ball coach, and Jos Buttler, the captain, consistent in their desire to persuade him to change his mind.

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He has duly been named in a 15-man squad that Luke Wright, England’s National Selector, confirmed is the line-up that they intend on taking to India in October, where their campaign will get underway against the same opponents, New Zealand, in a rematch of their epic final at Lord’s in July 2019.

Although England do not have to name their provisional World Cup squad until September 5, with scope for further changes until September 28, at this stage Stokes is one of nine survivors from the 2019 tournament, with Jonny Bairstow also set for his first white-ball internationals since breaking his leg in September last year.

England Men’s National Selector, Luke Wright, said: “We have been able to name two extremely strong squads that underline the depth of talent we enjoy in white-ball cricket.

“The return of Ben Stokes only adds to that quality with his match-winning ability and leadership. I am certain that every fan will enjoy seeing him back in an England ODI shirt again.

“We’re also excited to give first international call-ups to both Gus Atkinson and John Turner while Josh Tongue has deserved a place in the T20 squad after impressing during the Ashes.

“Any series against New Zealand is closely fought and will provide us with an ideal opportunity to test ourselves against one of the best teams in the world.”

England ODI squad Jos Buttler (capt), Moeen Ali, Gus Atkinson, Jonny Bairstow, Sam Curran, Liam Livingstone, Dawid Malan, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, Reece Topley, David Willey, Mark Wood, Chris Woakes

England T20I squad Jos Buttler (capt), Rehan Ahmed, Moeen Ali, Gus Atkinson, Jonny Bairstow, Harry Brook, Sam Curran, Ben Duckett, Will Jacks, Liam Livingstone, Dawid Malan, Adil Rashid, Josh Tongue, John Turner, Luke Wood

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