Captain Joe Root states how Ben Stokes approaches the game on and off will be an inspiration for the England team.
Stokes‘ incredible unbeaten century led England into some win to level the Ashes series at 1-1 and tickets for the first four weeks of this highly-anticipated fourth Test at Old Trafford are already sold out.
Root is hoping for a comfortable victory for England in Manchester but should it move down to the wire again, he’s in no doubt his vice-captain may haul through the side more or help motivate others to do so.
„One thing you know about Ben is that when the big occasions come about, he’s going to be there,“ Root said.
„He is going to need to become a part of it, he is never likely to shy away from any sort of struggle, and he has proven that this summer.
„For him, I think he has only got to keep working and doing exactly what he is doing – he is flying at the moment! He wants to exploit that, bottle this up and take advantage of it while he is in this form that is excellent.
„He is an excellent team man, he’s one of these guys who’ll go out of his way to help everyone and ensure that they feel as though they are prepared. He offer guidance, he is pioneer and a fantastic player. He reveals on the field.
„He has a fantastic balance of knowing when to say the right things. He’s very enthusiastic and people are dragged by him along with him. He’s just a really good bloke.
„If you mix that with the ability and ability he has and it’s a terrific combination and a terrific inspiration for not only the young guys coming into this group but the senior players too.“
Root confirmed Craig Overton will substitute Chris Woakes in the England XI while Joe Denly will proceed up to open with Jason Roy dropping down to No 4 because the hosts intention to capitalise on the goodwill and momentum caused by their own win at Headingley.
„When you come off a win like that it is a huge lift for the whole squad,“ he explained.
„For that game to unravel like it failed and also for us to develop here full of optimism and very much alive in this string is… I believed the way we played the week earlier at Lord’s it started to feel as though we were wrestling our way back into the show and we did a lot of very great stuff there.
„It felt just like last week we made a great deal of mistakes and did not quite get it through some human brilliance and some resilience within our batting in the second innings and high-quality bowling, bar the odd charm here or there, we still managed to win.
„In a sense, if we can deliver those two performances collectively we feel as if we will be in a great place in the conclusion of this week as well.“
Watch day one of the fourth Test between England and Australia at Old Trafford in 10am, Wednesday The Ashes.
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