England’s Ben Stokes set to have knee surgery following the World Cup

By Sports Desk November 03, 2023

England’s Ben Stokes is set to have surgery at the end of the World Cup as he attempts to conquer his long-standing left knee injury.

The Test captain has been struggling with the problem for at least 18 months and has had to play as a specialist batter recently, with his body unable to cope with the rigours of bowling.

Stokes suggested he was considering an operation after this summer’s Ashes series, which he laboured through in visible discomfort, but instead chose to come out of ODI retirement and take part in England’s title defence in India.

With England on the way out at the end of the group stage, he is likely to go under the knife before the end of the month and will hope to be ready to lead his side’s Test tour of India in the new year.

The first Test in Hyderabad starts on January 25, with the team expected to fly out to the United Arab Emirates for a warm-up camp two weeks earlier.

Stokes, speaking on the eve of his side’s clash with Ashes rivals Australia in Ahmedabad, said: “I am having surgery after the World Cup. I will hopefully be fine for the Test series (against India).”

Pressed for further details, he added: “When we go to those meetings we generally take a physio and doctor and they start talking. I just turn up, go to sleep, wake up and hope it is better.”

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    West Indies have sent a huge warning shot to all and sundry in the Super Eight of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup, as they eased past Afghanistan by 104 runs in their final group stage encounter at the Darren Sammy Stadium in St Lucia, on Monday.

    The win not only ensured that West Indies head into the next phase of the tournament unbeaten, but more importantly, reaffirmed that the Darren Sammy-coached team is a force to be reckoned with, in their hunt for a third T20 World Cup crown. Their two titles to date were won in 2012 and 2016.

    Having already secured qualification in the Super Eight stage, West Indies were chasing form and momentum against Afghanistan in the Group C top-of-the-table clash. However, the co-hosts put to rest any lingering doubt surrounding their title claims with the eye-catching performance that had historians scrambling.

    Nicholas Pooran with a 53-ball 98, including six fours and eight sixes, led the record-breaking charge, as he assumed the record for most sixes in T20I for the Caribbean side. His tally, which now stands at 128 sixes, swept past Chris Gayle’s 124.

    Homeboy Johnson Charles struck 43 off 27 balls including eight boundaries.

    Obed McCoy (3-14) and spinners Gudakesh Motie (2-28) and Akeal Hosein (2-21) then did the damage with the ball.

    Pooran’s knock is the highest individual score for the tournament so far, while West Indies’ total was their highest batting score in T20 World Cup, and the biggest of the tournament so far.

    In fact, the 332 runs scored across both innings, was also the highest match aggregate involving West Indies and Afghanistan in a T20I.

    Scores: West Indies: 218-5 (20 overs); Afghanistan 114 all out (16.2 overs)

    Johnson Charles 43 from 27 balls had eight boundaries

    After being asked to bat by Afghanistan, West Indies lost Brandon King (seven) in the second over, but it did little to halt their momentum, as Johnson Charles and Nicholas Pooran both clicked into top gear, in the blink of an eye.

    Charles struck three boundaries in the third over, which inspired Pooran to do something truly out of this world at the change of ends. The wicketkeeper/batsman produced a 36-run over off Azmatullah Omarzai –6, 5NB, 5WD, 0, 4LB, 4, 6, 6 –being the sequence.

    It’s the fifth time in Men’s T20I history an over has gone for 36 runs, and the second time at a World Cup.

    The punishment continued, as the pair pushed West Indies to 92 for 1 at the six-over mark. It’s the biggest Powerplay total in Men’s T20 World Cup history.

    Charles smacked another boundary that took West Indies to 100 from 7.4 overs, before he was dismissed to end an 80-run stand that took just six overs.

    Shai Hope’s 17-ball 25, which had two sixes, helped the run rate stay in double digits, as Pooran raised the bat in the 14th over – his 50 came off just 31 balls and it was his first half-century in a T20 World Cup.

    The boundaries had dried up in the middle overs courtesy of Afghanistan’s spinners, who gradually pulled things back, before captain Rovman Powell, who contributed 26 off 15 balls, including two sixes and a four, started finding his range – a six to start the 16th over took the Windies past the 150 mark.

    Pooran found his groove again in the 17th over, and later cracked 24 runs off the 18th bowled by Afghanistan’s captain Rashid Khan. The Trinidadian southpaw later fell via the run out route, two runs shy of what would have been a well-deserved century.

    Set a mammoth target, Afghanistan tried to set sail towards it, but lost Rahmanullah Gurbaz (zero), who lobbed to Andre Russell off Hosein’s third ball of the first over.

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    • Group B: USA, England, West Indies, South Africa

    Four of the Super 8 qualifiers have won the World Cup previously, India, England, West Indies and Australia. Super 8 matches will be played across four West Indies venues: Antigua and Barbuda (four matches), Barbados (three matches), Saint Lucia (three matches) and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (two matches).

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    USA v South Africa, Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, Antigua (10h30)

    England v West Indies, Daren Sammy Cricket Ground, St Lucia (20h30)

    20 June

    Afghanistan v India, Kensington Oval, Barbados (10h30)

    Australia v Bangladesh, Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, Antigua (20h30)

    21 June

    England v South Africa, Daren Sammy Cricket Ground, St Lucia (10h30)

    USA v West Indies, Kensington Oval, Barbados (20h30)

    22 June

    India v Bangladesh, Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, Antigua (10h30)

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    23 June

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