Former England captain Michael Vaughan hit back at retired Australian cricketer Tim Paine for referring to Ben Stokes as a selfish cricketer. The 2005-Ashes winning skipper stated that the star all-rounder is the most selfless cricketer and always thinks about the team.
While speaking to SEN Tassie on Friday, August 18, Paine opined there was a lot of 'Me, me, me' in Stokes' decision to reverse his ODI retirement ahead of the 2023 World Cup. He also questioned dropping Harry Brook from the squad despite keeping him for a year.
In his account on X (formerly known as Twitter), Vaughan posted:
"Ben stokes is the most selfless cricketer I have ever known .. He puts Team before himself more than any other player .. Ridiculous suggestion from Tim."
The England Test captain had retired from ODI cricket in July 2022, citing an 'unsustainable schedule'. The 32-year-old will return to the format in the upcoming ODI series against New Zealand.
"We're delighted to welcome him back" - Jos Buttler on Ben Stokes
England white-ball skipper Jos Buttler stated that unretiring was entirely Ben Stokes' call. He said, as quoted by BBC:
"I just left it to him to come to me if he wanted to come back. Any time a player of his quality is available again is fantastic. We're delighted to welcome him back. It was Ben's call. You all know Ben pretty well by now - I don't think anyone talking to him would persuade him. We had some conversations quite a while ago about it."
The Durham all-rounder played an instrumental role in England's 2019 World Cup win, hitting 465 runs in 11 matches, including an unbeaten 84 in the final. The defending champions will also open the 2023 World Cup, facing New Zealand on October 5th at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.
England and Australia are the only two teams to name their preliminary squads for the mega event.