India vs England: Ben Stokes will be up for selection in first Test if he is fit, says Joe Root

Joe Root, England's Test captain, had no doubt about Stokes being in the right frame of mind to play at Edgbaston despite a looming court appearance.

Agence France-Presse, Jul 18, 2018 23:47:32 IST

Leeds: England will have no qualms about selecting Ben Stokes for next month's first Test against India, even though the match could finish just a day before the all-rounder's trial for affray begins.

Stokes was charged by prosecutors back in January following an incident outside a Bristol night club in September last year.

He has since pleaded not guilty to the charge, with his trial set to start on 6 August — the day after the scheduled  1-5 August first Test at Birmingham's Edgbaston ground is due to end.

Given the trial is expected to last between five to seven days, Stokes, a dynamic middle-order batsman and lively seamer who is also one of England's best fielders, could well miss the second Test of a five-match series that starts at Lord's on August 9.

File image of Ben Stokes. Reuters

File image of Ben Stokes. Reuters

But Joe Root, England's Test captain, had no doubt about Stokes being in the right frame of mind to play at Edgbaston despite a looming court appearance.

"We are going to pick our best team and make sure we go into that series with the strongest squad," Root said.

"If Ben's fit to play, he'll be up for selection. He loves playing cricket, he loves being out there — you can see when he's on a cricket field he's fully engaged with what's going on.

"He wants the ball all the time. He wants to be involved in what's happening and I'm sure that will be exactly the same throughout that game."

Root was speaking after both he and Stokes played in the England side that beat India by eight wickets in the third ODI at Headingley on Tuesday to seal a 2-1 series win.

Star batsman Root scored exactly 100 not out on his Yorkshire home ground, his second successive century after his unbeaten 113 during England's 86-run series-levelling win at Lord's.

His latest hundred saw Root become England's outright most prolific century-maker in ODI cricket, with 13 hundreds from 110 innings at this level, surpassing by one the record he had shared previously with Marcus Trescothick.

Root, however, was far from satisfied, saying: "It's not a big thing, I don't think.

"It's obviously nice but I feel I've got a lot more to give this ODI team for hopefully a long time," he added.

"Hopefully, there's quite a few more (hundreds) left."

Updated Date: Jul 18, 2018 23:47:32 IST







Top Stories

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 5007 116
2 South Africa 4280 110
3 New Zealand 3213 107
4 Australia 4566 104
5 England 5490 104
6 Sri Lanka 4256 89
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6918 126
2 India 8058 122
3 New Zealand 5798 112
4 South Africa 5545 111
5 Pakistan 4872 102
6 Australia 4290 100
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 5280 135
2 India 5590 124
3 South Africa 2960 118
4 England 2586 118
5 Australia 3266 117
6 New Zealand 3367 116