Former England captain Nasser Hussain has urged star all-rounder Ben Stokes to reconsider his retirement from one-day internationals ahead of the 50-over World Cup later this year. Hussain believes Stokes is the final jigsaw puzzle piece for England in ODIs.
The 31-year-old announced his retirement from one-day international cricket in July 2022, citing a ‘unsustainable schedule’. While Stokes has not ruled out a 50-over return, coach Matthew Mott is also open to having him back.
Hussain stated on Sky Sports that Stokes is the match-winner England requires in high-pressure situations. He went on to say that the lack of a clutch match-winner causes India to falter in important games after dominating the bilaterals.
“When do you ask him the question? Now? But all he’ll say is ‘I’m retired’. Ben Stokes at the moment is officially retired. All these bits of the jigsaw have to fit in, he is the final bit because he is that match-winner under pressure.”
“Look what India have done, India have gone unbeaten at home for about three years now in white-ball cricket, but in tournament play, at just the wrong time in a knockout game, they can’t get over the line. England when they get to those crucial moments in any format, there is one individual that stands up. He is the final bit of the jigsaw.”
Hussain also stated that the time has come for the Test captain to add to his career legend, especially after leading England to victory in the T20 World Cup last year. He elaborated:
“I think just after England win the Ashes this summer, I’d be ringing Ben up and saying ‘do you fancy making it a World T20 win, an Ashes win and a World Cup win in the space of a year?”
“When he’s absolutely at his highest, loving life and loving the game, ‘Ben, do you want to take it one-step further? We joke but I think deep down he knows he’s got that trump card if he needs it.”
England has struggled in One-Day Internationals recently, losing to South Africa, Australia, and India in their last three series. They also only managed a draw against the Proteas in a rain-soaked home series in July.
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