All-rounder Ben Stokes has been an integral part of the English set-up since his debut. With time the cricketer has come of age and has produced many magnificent performances, both with bat and ball. The 26-year-old, who took part in the last edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), grossed one of the highest bids of the season -- Rs. 14.5 crore. Rising Pune Supergiants, led by Steve Smith, who had acquired the services of the flamboyant Stokes, reached the final of the IPL 10 but lost to Rohit Sharma-led Mumbai Indians by just one run.
With a strike rate of 136.17 in Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is) and solid performances in the other formats, Stokes was expected to be a vital cog in Pune's scheme of things. He lit up the IPL with both bat and ball and he certainly "earned his cash."
In the last season, Stoke played 12 matches for RPS and scored 316 runs with an average of 31.60 with his highest being 103 not out. An impressive strike of 142.98 makes him a dangerous man when out in the middle.
Stokes is not a deft stroke-player but he hits the ball cleanly. His impeccable timing was an absolute display of his crucial and magnificent hundred against Gujarat Lions that eventually led to Pune's victory.
Apart from this he also scalped 12 wickets with his best being three for 18. While this economy is just over seven, he has the knack of taking wickets in the death overs and gives his team an upper-hand in the game.
As RPS have been dissolved for the upcoming IPL season, it will be interesting to see whether he once again becomes the most expensive foreign player and which team bids the highest for him considering the fact that he hasn't played international cricket for quite some time now.