England fast bowler Mark Wood feels all-rounder Ben Stokes will do a brilliant job as skipper in the absence of regular Test captain Joe Root, who will miss the first Test against West Indies at Ageas Bowl.
Root’s wife is expecting their second child around the same time as the first Test and he will miss the much-anticipated clash starting July 8.
Wood stated Stokes has a good cricketing brain and whatever experience he lacks of leading the team on the highest level will be shared by the senior players in the side.
“I am one of the few people who have actually played under Stokesy, back in our days at the Durham academy,” Wood wrote in his column for the bbc.co.uk
“He was a good skipper back then, leading from the front, just like he does now. As the years have gone on, he has matured into a senior player, setting the example and dragging people along with him.
“He has a good cricket brain and, even though he does not have much captaincy experience, he will have seasoned players like James Anderson and Stuart Broad around to bounce ideas off,” he added.
“Stokesy won’t not just tell people what to do. He knows that players are individuals, so he will treat them as such. That said, he is also very honest, so he won’t be afraid to tell it straight if someone is not pulling their weight or sticking to a plan. He will do a brilliant job.”
The ECB on Tuesday had also announced that wicket-keeper-batsman Jos Buttler will be vice-captain to Stokes. Buttler is also vice-captain of the England limited overs sides.
“England Test captain Joe Root will leave the training camp at the Ageas Bowl on Wednesday afternoon to be with his wife, Carrie, who is expecting their second child later this week,” the ECB had said in its statement.
Meanwhile veteran England batsman Ian Bell has signed one-year contract extension with Warwickshire that will see him tied down to the club till 2021, it was announced yesterday.
Bell has been one of the most decorated cricketers in Warwickshire history having won six domestic trophies and scoring 17,350 runs, with 38 centuries, across all formats.
“I’ve been fortunate to be part of some fantastic Warwickshire sides that have won trophies across formats throughout my time with the club, and I firmly believe that we are building for another period of challenging for more titles,” Bell was quoted as saying in a statement uploaded on Warwickshire’s Twitter handle. “
In the last couple of years we’ve seen some really promising young players come into the side and make an immediate impression. “Part of my role now is to provide support to them as they have the potential to achieve a huge amount both with Warwickshire and England.
“I believe that it’s a very exciting time for the club and I can’t wait to get back out there wearing the Bear & Ragged Staff,” he added.
Bell featured in 118 Tests for England and scored 7,727 runs including 22 centuries. He is also among three Englishmen who were part of three Ashes winning teams.
Bell also featured in 161 ODIs before calling time on his career in the fifty-over format in 2015. “Ian is a winner, and everyone associated with Warwickshire CCC is naturally delighted that he has put pen to paper and reinforced his great commitment to his home county,” Warwickshire Sporting Director Paul Farbrace was quoted as saying.
“With Warwickshire, Ian has won every domestic trophy possible and he was part of one of the greatest England teams of all time. Having his knowledge and experience in the dressing room at Edgbaston is fantastic for our young players who can continue to learn from one of the greatest players in our history,” he added.
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