Ben Stokes. (Image Credits: Twitter)
England’s newly-appointed Test skipper Ben Stokes made a thunderous return for Durham in the ongoing County Championship. The southpaw notably struck five consecutive sixes in a 34-run over bowled by Josh Baker as Worcestershire toiled for 128 overs.
This took place in the 117th over of the innings when Stokes was only 30 away from his century. The 30-year-old reached triple figures in the fifth ball of the over by clobbering successive sixes. Following his 64-ball ton, the left-hander wanted to send the final delivery for six. However, he could only manage a four.
The seam-bowling all-rounder had to wait for his chance to bat as Sean Dickson, Keegan Petersen, and Scott Borthwick dominated the proceedings.
Stokes, who hammered 17 sixes in total, finally lost his wicket to Brett D’Oliveira in the 127th over for a 126-ball knock of 161. David Bedingham, who added 220 runs with the all-rounder, also perished in the next over as Durham declared for 580-6.
“I am honored to be given the chance to lead the England Test team” – Ben Stokes
Following his appointment as Joe Roots’ successor, the 30-year-old said this was a privilege and he is excited to start his tenure. Ben Stokes labeled Root as a great ambassador and expects him to play a critical role in taking the team forward. The New Zealand-born player said, as quoted by ESPN Cricinfo:
“I am honoured to be given the chance to lead the England Test team. This is a real privilege and I’m excited about getting started this summer. I want to thank Joe for everything he has done for English cricket and for always being a great ambassador for the sport all across the world.””He has been a massive part of my development as a leader in the dressing room and he will continue to be a key ally for me in this role.”
The ace all-rounder has previously captained England’s Test team only once, during the first Test of the 2020 home summer against the West Indies. However, the hosts lost that Test by four wickets. Stokes will start his full-time stint as skipper against New Zealand at Lord’s on June 2.