Ben Stokes' father is heading home after more than five weeks in hospital in South Africa due to a serious illness.

Ged Stokes was taken ill in Johannesburg ahead of the start of England's opening Test against the Proteas, putting his son's participation in the game in doubt.

However, following an improvement in his dad's condition, the all-rounder played in the Boxing Day fixture, and while the tourists lost at SuperSport Park, they bounced back impressively to record a 3-1 series victory.

Stokes was pivotal to his team's success, scoring 318 runs - including a century in the third Test - at an average of 45.42 while also taking 10 wickets at 22 apiece.

Ahead of the limited-overs leg of the trip, the 28-year-old posted a picture on Instagram with his parents ahead of their return flight, the cricketer declaring his pride at Ged's recovery following three operations while also praising his "incredible" mother, Deb.

"37 days in hospital 3 surgery's [sic] and he's finally on his way home. You are strong and you are stubborn which is why you are still with us," Stokes wrote in the post.

"I am so proud to be your son. And as for you mam, behind every man is a stronger women [sic] you are incredible."

Stokes has been rested for the upcoming three-match ODI series with South Africa, which begins on February 4 in Cape Town, but will return to England duty for a trio of Twenty20 games that complete the tour.

Joe Root believes the sky is the limit for England as a Test team after they completed a 3-1 series win in South Africa.

England wrapped up the series with a 191-run victory in the fourth Test at the Wanderers in Johannesburg on Monday.

The triumph marks England's first series success since a 3-0 sweep of Sri Lanka in November 2018.

Dom Sibley, playing in only his second Test series, top-scored for England with 324 runs, forming an opening partnership with another new boy in Zak Crawley.

Ollie Pope scored two half-centuries and his first century while spinner Dom Bess vindicated his selection with a crucial six-wicket performance in the third Test. 

With so many young players contributing to an impressive victory, captain Root is confident there is a lot more to come from his side.

"Very special indeed. It's taken a lot," Root said of the win at the post-match presentation. "To pick ourselves up and play the way we have done in the last three games is extremely pleasing.

"It's been a real squad effort from a number of guys that are very much at the start of their international careers.

"The sky's the limit for us now, we have to keep looking to get better. It's been a fantastic series for our development as a Test team."

Ben Stokes won the man of the series award, having played an instrumental role, most notably in the second Test in Cape Town, where he scored 119 runs, claimed six catches and took a match-winning 3-35 in South Africa's second innings. 

He also struck a century in the third Test and finished the series with 12 catches, the most of any fielder, his performance coming after his father was rushed to hospital days before the series.

"The most important thing is that we're walking away with a series win," Stokes said. "It's been a bit of a rollercoaster.

"I hope the old man is in his hospital bed watching this with a big smile on his face."

Mark Wood was the key figure in England's fourth Test win, taking nine wickets in the match and also forming the highest 10th-wicket partnership at the Wanderers as he and Stuart Broad combined for 82 to push the tourists to 400.

Man of the match Wood had not expected to play in the series finale, but he was included after elbow soreness led to Jofra Archer's omission.

The seamer, who has frequently battled injuries in his career, said: "There was a bit of doubt going in but boy am I glad I played now.

"I'm over the moon. I've had a lot of dark days, credit to the backroom staff, everyone's so supportive, [head coach] Chris Silverwood tries to get me to have fun."

Describing his approach, he added: "I give it everything I've got, run in hard for the captain, as much energy as I can, and let it fly."

England all-rounder Ben Stokes has been fined 15 per cent of his match fee for the fourth Test against South Africa after his altercation with a fan at the Wanderers.

Stokes issued a statement on Friday apologising for his choice of language in an exchange with a spectator.

The all-rounder was dismissed for two on the opening day in Johannesburg and was heard on a live broadcast aiming expletives at a member of the crowd.

After Friday's play, Stokes – who claimed to have been "subjected to repeated abuse" – took to Twitter to say sorry for his "unprofessional" reaction.

And having assessed the incident, the ICC took action on Saturday.

"Ben Stokes has been fined 15 per cent of his match fee for breaching Level 1 of the ICC Code of Conduct during the opening day of the fourth Test against South Africa at the Wanderers," read the ICC's statement.

"Stokes was found to have breached Article 2.3 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel, which relates to "use of an audible obscenity during an International Match".

"In addition to this, one demerit point has been added to the disciplinary record of Stokes, for whom it was the first offence during a 24-month period.

"Level 1 breaches carry a minimum penalty of an official reprimand, a maximum penalty of 50 per cent of a player's match fee, and one or two demerit points."

The ICC said the fact Stokes had admitted the offence and accepted the proposed sanction from ICC Elite Panel of Match Referees Andy Pycroft meant a formal hearing was not required.

England, leading the four-match series 2-1, are in a strong position after scoring 400 in their first innings, with Pieter Malan, Rassie van der Dussen and Dean Elgar falling early in South Africa's reply on day two.

Ben Stokes has issued a statement apologising for his choice of language after becoming engaged in a verbal altercation with a fan during the fourth Test with South Africa.

The all-rounder was dismissed for two on the opening day at the Wanderers and was heard on a live broadcast aiming expletives at a spectator.

After Friday's play, Stokes – who claimed to have been "subjected to repeated abuse" – took to Twitter to say sorry for his "unprofessional" reaction.

"I wish to apologise for my language that was heard on the live broadcast today after my dismissal," he wrote. "I should not have reacted in that way.

"As I was leaving the playing area, I was subjected to repeated abuse from the crowd. I admit that my reaction was unprofessional and I sincerely apologise for the language I used, especially to the many young fans watching the live telecast around the world.

"Throughout the Tests so far, the support from both sets of fans (England and South Africa) has been brilliant. One incident will not ruin such a competitive series, which we are determined to win."

It remains to be seen if officials will take any action against Stokes, who was one of four batsmen dismissed as England closed with 192 runs on the board.

The tourists lead the four-match series 2-1.

England became the first team to score 500,000 Test runs on the first day of the fourth Test with South Africa, which saw the tourists' strong start curtailed by a final-session fightback from the Proteas.

Joe Root's men were dealt a blow before winning the toss with the news that paceman Jofra Archer would be unable to play at the Wanderers because of elbow soreness.

Having seen his side take command of the third Test in Port Elizabeth with a dominant first-innings batting display, Root elected to give his charges the same opportunity, and openers Zak Crawley and Dom Sibley laid an excellent foundation.

Crawley was in fluent form as he scored his first half-century for his country but England slumped to 157-4 after the first-wicket stand of 107 was broken. 

Root (25 not out) and Ollie Pope (22 not out) steadied the ship, the former seeing England to the half-a-million milestone as they reached 192-4 before bad light stopped play.

After falling six runs short of a fifty at St George's Park, Crawley made no mistake in Johannesburg in a stylish innings that featured 11 boundaries, combining with Sibley for England's first century opening stand since December 2016.

Crawley's maiden international 50 was brought up in more fortuitous fashion with a thick edge through point but Sibley, having successfully reviewed an lbw decision and been given a reprieve by a no-ball, was not so lucky.

A centurion in the second match in Cape Town, Sibley was strangled down the leg side on 44 as Beuran Hendricks claimed a wicket on his Test debut.

Vernon Philander then ensured he will end his final Test with a wicket as Crawley presented a simple catch to Rassie van der Dussen, who made another grab at slip to end a difficult 35-ball spell at the crease for Joe Denly (27).

South African hopes of an England collapse were given a significant boost when talisman Ben Stokes fell to Anrich Nortje for just two, the all-rounder's attempt at a drive seeing him send another straight to Van der Dussen.

Stokes was involved in a verbal altercation with a fan as he left the field but, while England will now have to wait to see if he faces any repercussions from that, in terms of the match their position was improved as Root and Pope provided stability.

They did so in confident fashion. Root surpassed 7,500 Test runs with a pull through midwicket for four and his single through the covers took England to the historic 500,000 mark.

The fading light saw the fifth-wicket partnership interrupted on 35 and, though England have plenty of batting to come, Root and Pope will know that stretching their stand well into day two will go a long way to sealing a 3-1 series victory.

Ben Stokes surpassed 4,000 Test runs on Friday with his century in the third Test against South Africa, becoming just the second England player to reach that landmark and take 100 wickets in the longest format.

The all-rounder joined compatriot Ian Botham on the list of players to achieve both feats, which now features seven men after Stokes' exploits in Port Elizabeth on Friday.

Of those to have gone beyond 4,000 runs, India great Kapil Dev has the most wickets to his name with 434. Botham, who scored 5,200 runs in his career, is second with 383 wickets.

Stokes will look to add to his tally when South Africa begin their first innings at St George's Park. England reached lunch on day two on 335-4 with Stokes and Ollie Pope unbeaten on 108 and 75 respectively.

Daniel Vettori, Jacques Kallis, Garfield Sobers and Carl Hooper round off the list.

Former England all-rounder Andrew Flintoff fell short of 4,000 runs in his career. He took 226 wickets but managed 3,845 runs before retiring from Test cricket.

Ben Stokes and Ollie Pope shared a crucial partnership to lift England to 224-4 after they had threatened to throw away a promising start on day one of the third Test with South Africa in Port Elizabeth. 

The tourists, who dramatically levelled the four-match series at 1-1 last time out with the aid of a man-of-the-match display from Stokes, won the toss and opted to bat on a sluggish track, a decision South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis said he would have taken if given the chance.

Zak Crawley (44) and Dom Sibley (36) demonstrated plenty of patience in batting past lunch, the inexperienced openers sharing 70 in 31 overs as England avoided losing a wicket in the first session of a Test in which they had batted first for the first time since 2011.

However, although all of England's top four got in, Joe Denly and Joe Root adding 25 and 27 respectively, South Africa made regular inroads to gain the upper hand shortly after tea, Keshav Maharaj (1-55 from 32 overs) making a valuable contribution after Du Plessis had questioned the need for a spinner before the game. 

After slipping to 148-4, Root's side were grateful for an unbeaten stand of 76 between Stokes (38 not out), who was twice dropped, and Pope (39 not out), which raised their hopes of making a substantial first-innings score.

A largely sedate opening session saw England add 61 runs without loss against an attack boasting a debutant new-ball bowler in Dane Paterson.

However, the breakthrough for the Proteas came in the fourth over after lunch when Sibley - a centurion in Cape Town - clipped Kagiso Rabada (2-48) to Dean Elgar at backward square-leg.

The assured Crawley took his team into three figures with a four, but he fell in similar fashion to Sibley as the diving Rassie van der Dussen pulled off a terrific diving catch at leg gully off Anrich Nortje.

Maharaj did a particularly good job of limiting Denly's scoring and eventually got the wicket he deserved, a review showing England's number three to be plumb lbw after a delivery struck pad before bat. 

When Root was comprehensively bowled by a Rabada delivery that stayed low and crashed into off stump, South Africa looked to have seized the initiative.

Yet Stokes, who was named the Men's Cricketer of the Year for 2019 by the ICC on Wednesday, survived a number of scares to stabilise the innings alongside Pope.

South Africa burned both of their initial reviews with attempts to dismiss Stokes in successive Maharaj overs, while the all-rounder was reprieved on 10 when Pieter Malan failed to hold onto a difficult chance at short-leg.

Stokes got lucky again when he edged Paterson just short of slip in the next over, while Maharaj almost found his off stump when he missed a slog sweep.

Pope claimed three successive fours after Nortje took the new ball and the Proteas wasted another review when the sparingly used Vernon Philander incorrectly felt he had trapped Stokes lbw not playing a shot, only for replays to show the ball was comfortably missing off stump.

While progress for England was slow on Thursday, Temba Bavuma, who was told a "weight of runs" would help him regain his place in the Proteas team, made a career-best 180 for the Lions in South Africa's four-day domestic competition.

Ben Stokes has been named ICC Player of the Year after inspiring England to Cricket World Cup glory and playing one of the great Test innings to seal an Ashes victory at Headingley.

Stokes made a magnificent unbeaten 84 as England beat New Zealand in the most dramatic World Cup final at Lord's in July.

The all-rounder went on to guide England to a stunning one-wicket victory with an astonishing 135 not out in the third Test against Australia in Leeds, having also crafted a hundred in the previous match at Lord's.

Stokes scored 821 runs and took 22 wickets in 11 Tests last year, as well as 719 runs and 12 wickets in 20 ODIs to land the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy.

The England vice-captain said: "It is quite flattering to win the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy for the ICC Men's Cricketer of the Year. The past 12 months have been incredible for England cricket and to lift the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup for the first time was our greatest achievement.

"This award is testament to my team-mates and the support staff that have been there every step of the way. Fundamentally, without the support of these individuals, we would never have achieved our objective of lifting a major trophy.

"There is an incredible bond between team-mates and to savour our achievements, whether that's winning the World Cup final at Lord's or digging deep to win a Test match against Australia at Headingley. It is satisfying you can accomplish these superb highs together.

"The last 12 months have been the best in my career, and I believe what we attained will be the catalyst to achieve further success over the next few years."

Australia paceman Pat Cummins was named Test player of 2019, while India batsman Rohit Sharma was named the best ODI player in the world.

Cummins' team-mate Marnus Labuschagne is the ICC Men's Emerging Cricketer of 2019 after averaging 64.94 with the bat in the longest format last year.

Ben Stokes was driven by a desire to make his father proud as he shrugged off injury niggles to inspire England to a dramatic final-day victory over South Africa in the second Test at Newlands.

England prevailed by a comfortable-looking margin of 189 runs, but only after vice-captain Stokes - whose dad, Ged, was hospitalised in Johannesburg with a serious illness on December 23 - claimed three wickets in the last hour of play to extinguish the hosts' hopes of salvaging a draw.

With attack leader James Anderson hampered by an apparent side problem, Stokes stepped up with a stunning spell of 3-1 from 4.4 overs, dismissing Dwaine Pretorius, Anrich Nortje and Vernon Philander in quick succession.

The all-rounder's brilliant burst rounded off a superb individual display. After making 47 in England's first innings, he took five catches in South Africa's reply and then gave the tourists crucial additional time to chase victory by blasting 72 from 47 balls.

After his latest match-winning heroics, Stokes - the hero of his country's Cricket World Cup win and Headingley Ashes victory last year - said his father, who spent several days in intensive care following his admission to hospital, had been in his thoughts throughout.

"I don't want to get into it too much, but obviously with everything that's happened with my dad and stuff like that, you have a bit more inside of you and the niggles and the injuries and stuff like that just sort of go," Stokes told Sky Sports.

"I know I always wear this shirt with the most amount of pride that I possibly can running into bowl, but there was a bit more there for me this week.

"And you know, bad knee, bad side or whatever it was, I always had my dad in the back of my mind, thinking about where he was. I haven't managed to speak to him tonight but I hope I've made him proud."

England's win levelled the four-match series at 1-1 ahead of next week's third Test in Port Elizabeth.

Joe Root heaped praise on Ben Stokes after the all-rounder cleaned up South Africa's tail to secure a 189-run win for England in the second Test.

Stokes took on the familiar role of England's hero as he claimed the hosts' final three wickets at Newlands to bring an end to the Proteas' stubborn resistance on day five. 

Having also starred in the field and contributed 119 with the bat, the overall display was further proof of Stokes' quality, which was not lost on captain Root.

"You can throw the ball to him, put him in any situation and he will stand up for you," said Root.

"He will do everything for the team, he is a brilliant role model for all of the guys coming through, a brilliant senior player.

"He puts in an eight- or nine-over spell like that and keeps running in. And we've seen with the bat he can really change the game for you. He's a world-class player."

Stokes was named man of the match but felt obliged to highlight the contribution of maiden Test centurion Dom Sibley, who he insisted should have been given the award. 

"I thought Dom put all the hard yards in," said Stokes, who tried to drag the Warwickshire batsman up for the post-match presentation. "He should be the one up here. Full credit should go to him.

"The future looks great for us. We showed an outstanding amount of character."

Both Root and Stokes are now looking forward to the remainder of a four-match series which is nicely poised at 1-1.

"When you have a series and the first two games are results, it makes things very interesting," said Stokes.

"It's why five-day cricket should always be around. It's the best form of the game."

Root added: "For the young players involved in a Test like that, it is a great opportunity for us to keep improving and use it in the next game."

The third Test begins in Port Elizabeth on January 16.

Ben Stokes was England's hero once again as England took five wickets in the final session to win a thrilling second Test against South Africa in Cape Town that levelled the series at 1-1.

The tourists won by 189 runs, claiming the 10th wicket in the Proteas' second innings with just over half an hour left to play on day five, as Stokes, who had previously shone with the bat, took the last three wickets in dramatic fashion.

With 26 overs remaining, it looked like the hosts would bat out the day for a draw with Quinton de Kock and Rassie van der Dussen well set and their team on 237-5

But De Kock fell for 50 after a poor shot off Joe Denly before Van der Dussen's 194-minute, 140-ball innings for just 17 ended tamely when he was caught off Stuart Broad down the legside. 

Debutant Pieter Malan made 84 after surviving for 288 deliveries, but Stokes helped England prevail and gave coach Chris Silverwood his first Test win in four attempts despite largely being without the injured James Anderson after lunch.

There are two more Tests to come in the four-match series, with the next contest in Port Elizabeth starting on January 16.

Starting the day on 126-2, Keshav Maharaj soon fell for two in the third over, Anderson dismissing him plumb lbw, with the nightwatchman not even waiting for the umpire's finger.

That brought Proteas captain Faf du Plessis to the crease for what the hosts hoped would be a match-saving partnership with Malan.

The skipper, so often his side's final-innings hero, moved on to 19 but got out in poor fashion, giving his wicket away poorly when he swept straight to Denly at square leg off Dom Bess.

That meant South Africa were four down at lunch and the crucial wicket of Malan early in the second session, Sam Curran forcing an edge to second slip where Stokes was waiting gratefully, appeared to have the tourists in control.

The hosts desperately needed a partnership and it arrived through De Kock and Van der Dussen, who managed well as the 32 overs after lunch went for just 55 runs and one wicket.

But just as it looked like South Africa were comfortable, De Kock, who brought up his fifty with a four off Curran, could not believe what he had done when he sent a long hop from Denly straight to Zak Crawley.

England then saw a field change pay immediate dividends, Anderson catching Van der Dussen at leg gully before Stokes (3-35) found the edge of Dwaine Pretorius with captain Joe Root taking a smart catch at slip.

Anrich Nortje went for a golden duck next ball, Crawley keeping his cool in the slips to make the catch at the second attempt while on the ground.

And Vernon Philander was the last man to fall as he fended Stokes to gully, ending the retiring star's attempt to see South Africa through to the close at his home stadium.

England batsman Dom Sibley revelled in "one of the best days of my life" after making a maiden Test century on day four of the Cape Town contest against South Africa.

Sibley put England in a commanding position against the Proteas with an unbeaten 133 as the tourists declared on 391-8, setting the home team a target of 438.

The Warwickshire man was playing just his fourth Test as he steered England towards victory, with the Proteas still 312 runs shy of victory heading into day five.

"It's probably one of the best days of my life," Sibley told Sky Sports. "I was a bit nervy on 95 when I nicked one off [Kagiso] Rabada and luckily turned around and saw it race away to the rope.

"It was nice to get one away off [Keshav] Maharaj and a nice big celebration."

The opener is now hopeful he can add further "addictive" tons in the remainder of the series, with England eight wickets away from winning the Test and drawing level in South Africa.

"Your first one makes you feel like you can do it here - especially against a really good attack," he said. "I just want to keep doing it, to be honest.

"That feeling was pretty addictive today, with the way the crowd was. It doesn't mean I'm going to rest on my laurels. I'll train hard and hopefully have another couple in this series."

Sibley was feeling the pressure overnight as he sat on 85, but Ben Stokes, a new partner on Monday morning, was in destructive mood - making 72 off 47 - to aid his team-mate.

The centurion added at a news conference: "I slept terribly, to be honest. I was up at like 2am, watching TV, thinking about the 15 runs.

"It feels amazing right now. I'm just glad that I got over the line.

"I think [Stokes] took the pressure off me, made it really easy to just go at my own tempo. He kept saying to me, 'Don't change what you're doing, just play the way you play'.

"So when he was whacking it everywhere and I was nurdling it around and playing and missing and stuff, it was nice that, at the other end, he was doing the scoring. I could just go about it in my own way."

England opener Dom Sibley scored an unbeaten first Test century as England set South Africa the target of 438 on day four in Cape Town, a task the hosts quickly set about.

The standout performer of the second Test, Sibley finished on 133 from 311 balls as England declared on 391-8 in the second innings, giving their bowlers a day and a half to get the Proteas out.

But early progress was slow with the ball and, led by debutant Pieter Malan (63 not out), South Africa reached stumps still very much in the match on 126-2.

Ben Stokes had accelerated the tourists' innings with an explosive 72 off 47 in a partnership of 92 with Sibley, arriving at the beginning of the day with England already 264 runs in front.

Stokes' highest Test score came at Newlands in 2016, and he appeared in the mood for more of the same on Monday, quickly plundering boundaries as Sibley held his ground at the opposite end.

The star all-rounder mustered seven fours and three sixes in all as he raced past fifty before Sibley finally reached his patient 269-ball century with a sweep through backward square to the fence.

Stokes looked destined to join his team-mate on three figures in double-quick time, but he could not beat Rassie van der Dussen at long-on, caught off Keshav Maharaj's bowling.

Ollie Pope (3) quickly departed, and Jos Buttler joined Sibley and made 23 off 18. Sam Curran added 13, before England declared with Stuart Broad in the middle.

But South Africa started off fairly comfortably in reply, openers Malan and Dean Elgar only belatedly put under a little pressure in a Joe Denly spell shortly before tea.

Denly (1-26) returned following the interval and tempted a thin edge from Elgar (34) for a much-needed breakthrough the batsman unsuccessfully reviewed.

England soon grew frustrated again, though, as Malan paired with Zubayr Hamza (18) and brought up his first Test fifty, and James Anderson was sent in for a last tilt at the resolute pair.

That change did the trick, Hamza edging Anderson (1-18) behind in the second of the veteran's consecutive maiden overs, leaving the tourists eight wickets short of a series-levelling victory.

Sam Curran said England must dismiss South Africa early on day three and "bat big" after Ben Stokes' catches and a fired-up pace attack gave them the edge in the second Test at Newlands.

Curran and Stuart Broad took two wickets apiece on Saturday, while James Anderson claimed 3-34 to leave the Proteas 215-8 at stumps in reply to the tourists' 269 all out, having been 157-3 shortly after tea.

Stokes took four slip catches and put down two other chances, leaving him one away from becoming the first England fielder, excluding wicketkeepers, to grab five in a Test innings.

South Africa trail by 54 runs and Curran says England must take command on Sunday as they strive to level the four-match series at 1-1.

"What a way to finish the day. Hopefully we can get a lead," Curran told Sky Sports.

"We're in a good position. Hopefully we can get those two wickets in the morning and bat big."

Dean Elgar (88) and Rassie van der Dussen (68) were looking like giving the hosts a platform to build a big lead, the latter capitalising on being given a reprieve when he edged behind on 16, but Broad overstepped.

Spinner Dom Bess bowled 27 overs, foraging for an opening before he claimed the crucial fourth-wicket breakthrough, drawing Elgar into a hoik that found the safe hands of Joe Root.

"Bessy did an amazing job. There's not much for the seamers and not much for Bessy," Curran said.

"That is a flat wicket but at the same time there is a channel that we're trying to hit. It's about being as patient as possible and every now and again there's something there."

Ben Stokes thought England may have been forced into an emergency toilet paper order after illness spread through the camp in what the team have nicknamed 'The Cursed Tour' to South Africa.

All-rounder Stokes spent time off the field – as did captain Joe Root and Jos Buttler – during a 107-run defeat in the first Test at Centurion, which Ollie Pope, Chris Woakes and Jack Leach missed due to sickness.

Stuart Broad, Jofra Archer, Joe Denly, Mark Wood and Dom Sibley have also been affected, so Dom Bess and Craig Overton, who were called up as potential cover at the start of the tour, have been retained for the second match in Cape Town, which begins on Friday.

"We've nicknamed it 'The Cursed Tour' so far because it wasn't a great time for us in terms of the team trying to build up to an important Test series," Stokes told the Mirror.

"In the dressing room we have really been battling through a tough time of it with sickness, and without looking for sympathy it is fair to say guys really put their bodies on the line to get out there and give everything they had to fight for England as much as they could.

"It was the dodgiest changing room I've ever been in and at one stage I thought we were going to have to get an emergency order of toilet paper in Centurion, it was that bad.

"It will never be an excuse, but I hope people can understand that physically and mentally it was a huge challenge, getting up in the night, not sleeping, not eating. It all has an effect and over the course of a match you really feel it."

Stokes' preparation for the opening match of the series was thrown into further turmoil when his father Ged was taken to hospital in Johannesburg in a critical condition, though he has since improved.

After starring in England's Cricket World Cup success and masterminding an incredible victory over Australia in the third Ashes Test this year, Stokes said the health worry over his dad showed that family is the most important aspect of his life.

"If someone could say, 'I'll take everything away from you that happened this summer, but your dad is happy, healthy and watching you play cricket,' then I'd say yeah, swap it," Stokes added.

"Thankfully where he is now to where he was when he went in has been an unbelievable turnaround, but he's got a way to go."

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