Ben Stokes declares England Test team will 'live forever' in memory of cricket fans

New Delhi, July 3 (IANS) The England Test captain Ben Stokes has declared that his team 'will be remembered forever' by those fortunate enough to witness their brand of cricket.
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Ben Stokes declares England Test team will 'live forever' in memory of cricket fans

New Delhi, July 3 (IANS) The England Test captain Ben Stokes has declared that his team 'will be remembered forever' by those fortunate enough to witness their brand of cricket.

“Everything we’ve done up until now isn’t going to stop because we haven’t managed to win the urn back. The reward for our work isn’t what we get but what we become. And what we have managed to do is we’ve managed to become a sports team that will live forever in the memory of people who were lucky enough to witness us play cricket," Stokes was quoted as saying in the documentary ‘Ashes 2023 Our Take."

The documentary has already garnered significant attention, notably for revealing English players' candid opinions on the controversial stumping of Jonny Bairstow. Among the revelations, former captain Joe Root conceded that the Australian team's actions were fair and that he might have acted similarly in their position.

However, a particularly poignant clip has surfaced, capturing Stokes addressing his team in the Old Trafford dressing room after the fourth Test in Manchester, which was drawn due to rain, with the visitors leading 2-1, resulting in Australia retaining the Ashes urn. With the Aussies leading 2-1, England would not be able to win the urn even after playing the fifth Test which they did and the series was tied 2-2.

Stokes acknowledged the disappointment of not being able to reclaim the Ashes but urged his team to recognize the broader significance of their journey.

“I know it’s going to be a bit flat, I know it’s going to hurt that we go into the next game (at The Oval) not being able to get the urn back. But what we have done is something a lot bigger than any Ashes trophy could ever signify for this team –- be the team that everybody will always remember.”

The sentiment behind Stokes' words is underscored by the context of England's recent Ashes performances. The team has not won an Ashes series since 2015 and has not secured a Test match victory in Australia for 15 years. Despite these challenges, Stokes' leadership has brought a new spirit to the side, with England winning four of their eleven Tests since the start of 2023.

In contrast, Australia have enjoyed significant success during the same period, including winning the ICC World Test Championship, retaining the Ashes in England, and clinching the World Cup.

--IANS

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