For Ben Stokes, 2019 is a year to remember. The New Zealand-born all-rounder won England their first 50-over World Cup last month. On Sunday, the man again played an instrumental role to give the Three Lions yet another memorable victory, this time in a Test match to level the ongoing Ashes 1-1.
His 135 not out in the second innings at Leeds brought England back into the game from nowhere and earned them a victory by 1 wicket. Stokes added 76 unbeaten runs for the last wicket with Jack Leach as England successfully chased down a steep target of 359.
Just a month and a half since his heroics in the controversial World Cup final at Lord’s, Stokes slammed the winning runs for England at Leeds to leave the home audience hysteric. Australia had two major opportunities to get the last wicket when England needed two runs to win. The dual chances came in Nathan Lyon‘s over when he fumbled to run Leach out and then an umpiring decision over a genuine leg before wicket went against the visitors and they could not overturn it as they had no reviews left.
At 1-1, this Ashes is wide open
With England’s win, the series is now wide open and the entire cricketing world will remain glued to the final two games of the series. The next Test will start at Old Trafford on September 4. Australia haven’t won an Ashes in England since 2001 while England are eager to reclaim it back after their 0-4 loss Down Under in 2017-18.
The English fans were busy paying tributes to Stokes for his heroics at Leeds but one surpassed all with his unique style. On Monday, he went to his office sporting the cricket kit and former Australia batsman Dean Jones posted a hilarious video of the same on Twitter, leaving netizens in splits. The man was wearing gloves and pads on his office dress, greeting everyone as he entered the premises.
A mate of mine Andrew Bayliss (who’s a POM) turns up at work @TaylorMade_Lab 🙄 pic.twitter.com/ZGhIEnYhcW
— Dean Jones AM (@ProfDeano) August 26, 2019
Stokes has evolved as a key member of the current English side over the last few years, across formats. The bar brawl that had put his career under a question mark has indeed taught him a valuable lesson in life and the 28-year-old now is hell-bent to make up for the lost time and reputation.
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