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Ben Stokes announces indefinite break from all forms of cricket

Ben Stokes recently captained the England side in the ODI series vs Pakistan England v India: Specsavers 5th Test - Day Two
Ben Stokes recently captained the England side in the ODI series vs Pakistan England v India: Specsavers 5th Test - Day Two
Pratyush Rohra
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The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have confirmed that ace England all-rounder Ben Stokes will take an indefinite break from all cricket with immediate effect.

The World Cup winner's decision to take a step away from all forms of the game is to prioritize his mental health and to rest his left index finger, which has not fully healed since his return to competitive cricket earlier this month.

The news may come as a shock to most, but it once again highlights the importance of prioritizing mental health in these unprecedented times. It also serves as an eye-opener to the fans, reminding them how cricketers are, in fact, humans after all.

The ECB has backed the all-rounders' decision, stating that they "fully support" Stokes' decision and stated that they will continue to help him during his period away from the game.

In a statement released by the ECB, Ashley Giles, Managing Director of England Men's Cricket, said:

"Ben has shown tremendous courage to open up about his feelings and well being. Our primary focus has always been and will continue to be the mental health and welfare of all of our people."
"The demands on our athletes to prepare and play elite sport are relentless in a typical environment, but the ongoing pandemic has acutely compounded this. Spending significant amounts of time away from family, with minimal freedoms, is extremely challenging. The cumulative effect of operating almost continuously in these environments over the last 16 months has had a major impact on everyone's wellbeing. Ben will be given as long as he needs, and we look forward to seeing him playing cricket for England in the future."

Ben Stokes has pulled out of the India series

Ben Stokes celebrating in the wicket of Indian skipper, Virat Kohli
Ben Stokes celebrating in the wicket of Indian skipper, Virat Kohli

The ECB have also confirmed that Ben Stokes will miss England's upcoming Test series against India, which is set to get underway on August 4th at Trent Bridge. Stokes will be replaced in the squad by Somerset's Craig Overton.

This decision by one of the game's best all-rounders could be a real eye-opener and a cruel reminder for everyone to understand how players who travel from one bio-bubble to another, with or without their families, sacrifice their mental health to keep the show going.

Our thoughts are with Ben Stokes and we certainly hope to see him back on the cricket field whenever he might be ready.


Edited by Rohit Mishra
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