Stokes to come out of ODI retirement for World Cup

stokes-to-come-out-of-odi-retirement-for-world-cup
Ben Stokes pats the World Cup trophy
Ben Stokes was player of the match in the final when England won the World Cup in 2019

Ben Stokes’ return to the England one-day side for the defence of the World Cup will be confirmed on Wednesday.

Stokes, 32, will come out of retirement to be named in a 15-man squad for a four-match series against New Zealand in September.

The bulk of that party will form the squad for the World Cup in India in October and November.

Stokes was man of the match in the final when England won the World Cup for the first time in 2019.

The all-rounder retired from one-day internationals last summer, saying that playing three formats was unsustainable.

He continued to lead the England Test team and play in T20 internationals, starring in the final as England lifted the World Cup in the shortest format in Australia in November.

When asked in July if he would play in the 50-over World Cup, Stokes reiterated he was retired.

But in an interview with the Daily Mail, England white-ball coach Matthew Mott said captain Jos Buttler would approach Stokes over reversing that decision. A number of newspaper reports on Monday said Stokes was considering the request.

A quirk of the schedule means England have no Tests until they tour India for five matches between January and March next year.

Stokes had planned to use the gap to address a long-standing left-knee problem, which has severely limited his ability to bowl.

Therefore, his role at the World Cup could largely be as a specialist batter.

England will name their squad for the New Zealand ODIs, played between 8-15 September, at 10:00 BST on Wednesday. They will also name a strong 15-man party for four T20s against the Black Caps, beginning on 30 August.

Following the New Zealand series, England will play three ODIs against Ireland at the end of September. A separate squad for this will be named at a later date.

Because of that series’ close proximity to the beginning of the World Cup on 5 October, most of the first-choice players will be rested.

England begin their World Cup campaign against New Zealand in a repeat of the 2019 final.

Mott also said England might be willing to take a risk on the fitness of pace bowler Jofra Archer, who has been plagued by injuries since bowling the super over in the thrilling finale four years ago.

England’s World Cup squad will have a familiar feel, probably including nine of the squad that was successful on home soil in 2019.

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