Ben Stokes Announces Retirement From ODIs, Will Play Last Match On Tuesday
Ben Stokes says he will play his last ODI game against South Africa on Tuesday
In a surprising decision, star England all-rounder Ben Stokes on Monday announced that he will be retiring from ODI cricket and will be playing his last 50-over format game on Tuesday against South Africa in Durham. The all-rounder made the announcement on his Twitter account along with an image of him holding the World Cup trophy and a lengthy statement.
"I will play my last game for England in ODI cricket on Tuesday in Durham. I have decided to retire from this format. This has been an incredibly tough decision to make. I have loved every minute of playing with my mates for England. We have had an incredible journey on the way," said Stokes in the official statement.
"As hard as a decision as this was to come to, it's not as hard dealing with the fact I can't give my teammates 100% of myself in this format anymore. The England shirt deserves nothing less from anyone who wears it. Three formats are just unsustainable for me now. Not only do I feel that my body is letting me down because of the schedule and what is expected of us, but I also feel that I am taking the place of another player who can give Jos and the rest of the team their all. It's time for someone else to progress as a cricketer and make incredible memories like I have over the past 11 years," he added.
Further in his statement, Stokes said: "I will give everything I have to Test cricket, and now, with this decision, I feel I can also give my total commitment to the T20 format. I would like to wish Jos Buttler, Matthew Mott, the players and the support staff every success going forward. We have made great strides in white-ball cricket over the past seven years, and the future looks bright.
"I have loved all 104 games I have played so far, I've got one more, and it feels amazing to be playing my last game at my home ground in Durham. As always, the England fans have always been there for me and will continue to be there. You're the best fans in the world. I hope we can win on Tuesday and set the series up nicely against South Africa," he added.
Stokes has so far played 104 ODIs for England, scoring 2,919 runs at an average of 39.44. The all-rounder had starred in the final of 2019 World Cup as he played an unbeaten knock of 84 against New Zealand in the summit clash. Stokes was adjudged as Player of the Match.
After making his ODI debut against Ireland in 2011, Stokes has scored 2919 runs, including three centuries, and taken 74 wickets. He captained the ODI side during last summer's 3-0 Royal London Series victory against Pakistan and has been an inspirational leader.
The high-pressure matches have always brought out the best in Stokes, and he is currently the captain of England Test side. Under his leadership, England defeated New Zealand 3-0 in Test series and then the Three Lions defeated India in the Edgbaston Test.
In June, 2019 World Cup-winning captain Eoin Morgan had also announced his retirement from international cricket.