Ben Stokes opts out of England’s T20 World Cup defence

Written by Shreyas Vyas

England Test captain Ben Stokes on Tuesday has opted out from the T20 World Cup, which will be played the USA and West Indies in June, the England Cricket Board (ECB) has said in a statement.

“Ben Stokes has confirmed today that he does not wish to be considered for selection ahead of this summer’s ICC Men’s T20 World Cup,” said ECB.

Stokes, who only bowled in the fifth and final Test match against India in Dharamsala wants to get fully fit to bowl not only for the three-match Test series’ against West Indies and Sri Lanka respectively, but for all cricket in the future.

“I’m working hard and focusing on building my bowling fitness back up to fulfil a full role as an all-rounder in all formats of cricket,” said Stokes.

“Opting out of the IPL and the World Cup will hopefully be a sacrifice that allows me to be the all-rounder I want to be for the foreseeable future.

“The recent Test tour of India highlighted how far behind I was from a bowling point of view after my knee surgery and nine months without bowling. I’m looking forward to playing for Durham in the County Championship before the start of our Test summer.

“I wish Jos, Motty and all the team the best of luck in defending our title.”

The defending champions will start their campaign on June 4 against Scotland at the Kensington Oval in Barbados. hey will then play group matches against Australia, Oman, and Namibia in Barbados and Antigua.

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Shreyas Vyas