Ben Stokes to miss India series, takes an ‘indefinite break from all cricket’


Craig Overton replaces the allrounder in the squad for five Tests against India

Ben Stokes has pulled out of England’s Test series against India and will take “an indefinite break from all cricket” to focus on his mental wellbeing and continue his recovery from a finger injury.
Stokes has spent the vast majority of the last year away from home, living in bio-secure environments with England’s Test and limited-overs squads and with Rajasthan Royals in the IPL. He missed two of England’s Tests against Pakistan last summer in order to see him family in New Zealand, and his father Ged died in December after suffering from brain cancer during the final year of his life.

He has also struggled with a finger injury throughout the summer, which has healed much slower than initially anticipated. Stokes was rushed back to play for Durham in the Vitality Blast after they suffered an availability crisis due to a Covid-19 outbreak in their second XI squad, and then returned to England duty ahead of schedule in similar circumstances, captaining a second-string team to a 3-0 ODI series win against Pakistan.

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