However, he remains determined to contribute with both bat and ball in the upcoming Test series against Australia. The 31-year-old all-rounder, who featured in only two matches for the Chennai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League (IPL) due to minor injuries and non-selection, used the time off to focus on his fitness.
Stokes credited the medical team in Chennai for their assistance, working in coordination with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), to help improve his knee condition. He expressed satisfaction with his progress, comparing his physical state to the successful years of 2019 and 2020.
Speaking at a pre-match press conference ahead of the Ireland Test, Stokes reflected on his IPL experience and how it turned into a positive opportunity for him. Despite not getting many chances to play, he was able to concentrate on various aspects of his game, including technical improvements with the bat, fitness training, and gym workouts. Stokes acknowledged that his limited game time in the IPL could potentially be a blessing in disguise.
While the exact nature of Stokes’ knee problem remains undisclosed, he emphasized the importance of managing his workload and working closely with the medical team to overcome it. Looking ahead to The Ashes, he expressed hope that he would be able to perform at his best and contribute with his bowling skills throughout the series.
England Will Continue To Play Aggresive Cricket
Regarding England’s aggressive style of play under his captaincy, Stokes confirmed that the team would continue with the same approach against Australia. He highlighted their successful formula, which has led to victories in 10 out of 12 Tests under his leadership, while acknowledging that there will be ups and downs in the game.
Stokes stressed the team’s focus on their own abilities and strategies, rather than getting overly concerned about the opposition. Recognizing the historic significance of The Ashes series and its global appeal, Stokes expressed the team’s excitement about the upcoming contest.
He emphasized the collective enthusiasm among players and staff, emphasizing their determination to make the series a memorable one. England’s Test campaign commences with a four-day fixture against Ireland at Lord’s on Thursday, followed by the highly anticipated five-match Ashes series starting on June 16 at Edgbaston.