Stokes reluctant to miss white-ball games but 'England schedule needs to be looked at'
- Ben Stokes was made England's Test captain after Joe Root stepped down last month
- He will lead England in the Test series against New Zealand next month
- "I don't want to miss England matches, I want to play as much as I can for England," Stokes said
Ben Stokes was made England's Test captain after Joe Root stepped down last month. The 30-year-old, in his first assignment, will lead the Three Lions against Kane Williamson's New Zealand when they visit for a three-match Test series starting June 2.
Stokes missed out on a majority of cricketing action in 2021 after he took a break to focus on his mental health. He also was recovering from two finger operations. He is representing Durham in County Championship, where he smashed a record 17 sixes in an innings en route to 161 against Worcestershire.
Stokes, as quoted by Cricbuzz, said that too much cricket is being expected of players. He added that taking a mental health break could benefit his England captaincy.
He, however, doesn't want to pull out of England's white-ball commitments this summer due to the added responsibility.
"The schedule definitely is something that needs looking at," Stokes said. It is ridiculous the amount of cricket that is expected of people. The fact there is a Test match and one-day series overlapping sums it up. It really needs looking at from a workload point of view," Stokes said.
"I don't want to miss England matches, I want to play as much as I can for England. In an ideal world you would have a schedule that allows you to play everything, but unfortunately it is not possible and my number-one priority is Test cricket at the moment, so I have to prioritise that over white ball," he said.
Stokes further added that he plans to play Joe Root at No 4 and come in at No 6.
"I've already spoken with Joe; I've asked him to go back to four and I'm going to be at six. Wherever Joe bats he gets runs, but his best position is at four. Joe will probably be averaging 90 now instead of 60 [Root's average in 2021], so it will be good. I feel that him at four and me at six gives us a bit of experience in that gap. So you can obviously see where the places are opening up for people to put their hands up, it's three and five."