“Test cricket is absolutely my number one priority” – Ben Stokes
By SMCS - Feb 8, 2022 1:46 pm
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England Test vice-captain Ben Stokes has shared the reason behind his decision to opt-out from the upcoming IPL mega auction. The all-rounder believes playing county cricket this summer will help him to be in good stead for the upcoming home summer. However, Test captain Joe Root too has been out of the auction list.

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Australian players checking the bails as umpire ave Ben Stokes out

In his column for the Daily Mirror, Stokes said: “Test cricket is absolutely my number one priority, and I want to work alongside Joe Root, the best man we could have as captain, to get us there. It is why I thought long and hard about whether to go to the IPL or not, and felt that this was not about the money but about where my priorities are. It wouldn’t be fair on any team I signed up for if I wasn’t totally focused on things out there.”

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England’s performance in the 2021-22 Ashes series was a dismal one as they lost the series. Their batting reached its lowest point and they suffered a collapse in four out of five Tests as well. And, after that, a lot of changes were made in the team as well.

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Ben Stokes took an outstanding catch

While England have sacked their coach Chris Silverwood and batting coach Graham Thorpe after their dismal Ashes series defeat, Assistant coach Paul Collingwood has replaced Silverwood and joined as the interim head coach for the Test series in the West Indies as well.

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“The Test team is where it is at for me right now, and I want to give as much of my time and energy to that as possible. I think the Test side will benefit more from me playing a number of county championship matches this summer, and getting myself as best prepared as possible for the challenges of New Zealand and South Africa,” Ben Stokes concluded.