On Tuesday, England coach, Chris Silverwood clarified that they will not put pressure on their premier all-rounder, Ben Stokes to returns from his mental health break in order for them to level terms with India in their ongoing Test series. Silverwood was speaking the day after India registered a historic win in the second Test at Lord’s to go 1-0 up in the five-match series.
Last month, Ben Stokes decided to go on “an indefinite break from all cricket with immediate effect” because of the stress of his role as one of England’s most high-profile stars. England coach said it was a case of waiting for Stokes to approach him as to when he feels ready to return to join the team. Aside from the India series, England faces a hectic winter schedule.
The Brits are scheduled to play a couple of T20Is in Pakistan in October, the T20 World Cup — which is scheduled to be taking place in the United Arab Emirates and Oman — the five-Test Ashes series in Australia, and a three-Test series in the West Indies.
Elaborating the same, Chris Silverwood said, “No, there is no pushing from my point of view. I don’t think you can push with these issues. I will wait and there will be an element of waiting for him to come to me to let me know he is ready.”
Stokes missed England’s Test series loss to New Zealand in June after suffering an injury but returned to captain the ODI team to register a 3-0 series win over Pakistan last month. Silverwood said the decision has to lie with Stokes and his family as to when he finds the right time to make a comeback.
England coach elaborated, “I would stress again the important thing is Ben is okay, his family is okay and that he comes back strong and, when he re-enters the frame, he is ready in his mind to come back and perform for England like we know he can. There are people around him supporting him and, when he is ready to come back in, we will welcome him with open arms, but until then he will get all the support he needs.”