Ben Stokes to retire from one-day international cricket

England Test captain says current schedule makes playing all three formats 'unsustainable'

England's Ben Stokes, left, and with captain Eoin Morgan after winning the 2019 World Cup. Morgan retired from international cricket at the start of July. PA
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Ben Stokes has said that he will be retiring from one-day international cricket after the Tuesday's match against South Africa.

The current Test-match captain made the surprise announcement on Monday after deciding that he can no longer commit himself all three formats, but will continue to play in T20 Internationals.

Stokes, who famously led his country to glory in the 2019 World Cup final with an unforgettable performance, admitted that the current relentless schedule of international cricket was taking its toll on his body.

He will take the field at Chester-le-Street against South Africa in the first of three ODIs as Jos Buttler looks to win his first series as white-ball captain.

“I will play my last game for England in ODI cricket on Tuesday in Durham,” said Stokes in a statement on Monday.

“I have decided to retire from this format. This has been an incredibly tough decision to make. I have loved every minute of playing with my mates for England. We have had an incredible journey on the way.

“As hard as a decision as this was to come to, it’s not as hard dealing with the fact I can’t give my teammates 100 per cent of myself in this format any more. The England shirt deserves nothing less from anyone who wears it.

“Three formats are just unsustainable for me now. Not only do I feel that my body is letting me down because of the schedule and what is expected of us, but I also feel that I am taking the place of another player who can give Jos and the rest of the team their all.

“It’s time for someone else to progress as a cricketer and make incredible memories like I have over the past 11 years.

“I will give everything I have to Test cricket, and now, with this decision, I feel I can also give my total commitment to the T20 format.”

After making his ODI debut against Ireland in 2011, all-rounder Stokes has scored 2,919 runs, including three centuries, and taken 74 wickets.

He also captained the 50-over side during last summer’s 3-0 Royal London Series victory against Pakistan.

“I would like to wish Jos Buttler, [coach] Matthew Mott, the players and the support staff every success going forward. We have made great strides in white-ball cricket over the past seven years, and the future looks bright.

“I have loved all 104 games I have played so far, I’ve got one more, and it feels amazing to be playing my last game at my home ground in Durham.

“As always, the England fans have always been there for me and will continue to be there. You’re the best fans in the world. I hope we can win on Tuesday and set the series up nicely against South Africa.”

England manager director Rob Key hailed Stokes' “incredible international career in ODI cricket”, also saying that he “completely understood” his decision.

“I’m sure that when we look back on Ben’s career and see this as one of the reasons he will play 120-plus Tests and help England in T20 matches and World Cups for many years to come,” added Key.

“It is a typically selfless decision that will benefit England long-term.”

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Updated: July 18, 2022, 12:25 PM