Stokes 'badgered' Giles to be reinstated as vice-captain

Ben Stokes (Supplied)
Ben Stokes (Supplied)

Cape Town - Ben Stokes pleaded with the England management to be reinstated as vice-captain of the Test team, according to the England Cricket Board's (ECB) managing director Ashley Giles.

Stokes, the hero of last week's dramatic series-levelling Ashes victory over Australia, was restored as Joe Root's deputy earlier this year.

The all-rounder was stripped of his position in 2017 following his involvement in a brawl in Bristol.

The 28-year-old was cleared of affray in August last year and has since gone on to cement his place as one of England's most important players.

His reappointment was made after his starring role in England's World Cup success earlier in the summer.

Giles told BBC Radio 5 Live's Sportsweek programme: "He badgered myself and (ECB chief executive) Tom Harrison. He was desperate to do it.

"He really is one of your warriors when you take to the field and he has demonstrated that a couple of times this year at least, and on two of the biggest stages you could imagine in the World Cup final, and last week in the Test match.

"He is almost, when you write the team down, your first name on the list."

Stokes hit a brilliant unbeaten 135 in the third Test at Headingley last Sunday to guide England to a sensational one-wicket win that levelled the five-match series at 1-1.

The fourth Test takes place at Old Trafford this week and Giles hopes England maintain the momentum.

"We are very much back in the Ashes series now and I'm sure the guys will be full of confidence. And that performance that Ben Stokes delivered, I'm sure it will raise everyone else as well," Giles continued.

"Ben's innings can bring everyone along with them and give them confidence against this very good Australia bowling attack that we can deliver and we can put them under pressure."

England will again be without record wicket-taker James Anderson after the seamer suffered a setback in his recovery from a calf injury.

"Jimmy will be desperate really. He was obviously looking forward to this series and had worked so hard to try and get back for these last two Test matches," said Giles.

"He tested himself out well but just picked up a niggle on the third day (playing for Lancashire second XI) and once that happens we obviously know we can't risk it. It is disappointing for Jimmy but I am sure he will be back."

- TeamTalk

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