England’s new Test captain Ben Stokes got in the mood as he hammered a 64-ball century for Durham against Worcestershire in a County Championship match. During his innings, Stokes smoked 34 runs off an over, which included five consecutive sixes and a four as Durham solidified their position in the match declaring at 580/6.
Stokes’s innings eventually ended on 161 off 88 balls but not before he had created history. Stokes smoked 17 sixes in his innings, which is the most in a single County championship innings. Stokes walked out to bat in the third over of the day and in less than an hour and a half, had waltzed to 131 off 74 balls. By lunch, he had taken his score to 147 off 82 balls with eight fours and 15 sixes. Stokes’ century is the fastest in FC cricket for Durham. He was on 70 off 59 balls when 18-year-old Josh Baker came on to bowl the 117th over, in which Stokes went 6, 6, 6, 6, 6, and 4 to reach his century.
Last month, Stokes was appointed England’s Test captain after Joe Root decided to step down. Stokes’s first assignment will be in June when England host New Zealand for a Test series. Stokes reaffirmed faith in England’s veteran fast-bowling due of James Anderson and Stuart Broad, both of whom were dropped for the Test series in the West Indies.
“I want to win games of cricket for England. The best way to do that is picking your best XI and in my opinion if Stuart Broad and James Anderson are fit they are available for selection,” the ICC quoted Stokes as saying.
“I want selfless cricketers who make decisions based on winning the game of cricket for England. At the end of the day the most important thing is winning. I want to be part of a team that has that real mentality, that doesn’t take a backwards step,” Stokes added.
In July last year, Stokes decided to take an indefinite break from cricket to focus on mental health, because of which he missed the Test series between India and England. After three three months, Stokes announced his comeback to cricket by returning to a training session.
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