With England’s 2019 World Cup final hero set to bid adieu to One-Day International cricket after the first ODI against South Africa on Tuesday, here is a look at the top five moments of the all-rounder’s career in a format in which he has scored 2919 runs in 104 matches at an average of 39.44 and has picked 74 wickets to date.
Stokes sizzles in 2019 World Cup final
July 14, 2019 vs New Zealand: 84*(98)
The defining moment of Ben Stokes’ ODI career intersects with that of English cricket – the 2019 World Cup final triumph. The Christchurch-born all-rounder was instrumental in England’s win on boundary count in the summit clash against New Zealand. With England struggling at 86 for four chasing 242, Stokes struck an unbeaten 98-ball 84 and paired with Jos Buttler for a 110-run fifth wicket stand. With 15 runs needed off six balls, Stokes smashed a six off the third ball of the over before, controversially, a Martin Guptill-throw deflected off his bat to run away to the boundary, adding six crucial runs to England’s score in the process.
However, with three runs required off two balls, Stokes failed to take England over the line as New Zealand effected two run outs with the batters pushing for a tight second run on both occassions. The Super Over would now decide the fate of the finalists for the first time in the history of the sport. In the tie-break, the left-hander scored eight runs off three balls and helped England register 15 along with Buttler. England eventually won the most coveted title in the sport by the narrowest of margins and Stokes was adjudged Player-of-the-Match.
You cannot do that, Ben Stokes...
May 30, 2019 vs South Africa: 89(79) & 2/12
Stokes had stamped his authority on the tournament in the World Cup opener against South Africa with a stunning catch at deep midwicket, which was hailed by some as one of the best catches ever in the history of the game and prompted former England captain Nasser Hussain to famously exclaim during TV commentary, “No way! No, no way! You cannot do that, Ben Stokes. That is remarkable. That is one of the greatest catches of all time!”
Stokes stuck his right hand out after backpedaling a bit to dismiss Andile Phehlukwayo and leave South Africa reeling at 180 for seven in the 35 th over, chasing 312. Earlier, Stokes had top scored with 89 runs off 79 balls to help the host post a commanding 311 and then dismissed Kagiso Rabada and Imran Tahir off consecutive deliveries in the 40 th over as England romped to a 104-run win to get its World Cup campaign off to a perfect start.
Stokes beats the rain to knock Australia out
June 10, 2017 vs Australia: 102*(109) & 1/61
In trying conditions and against the lethal pace trio of Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins, Ben Stokes lit up Edgbaston with a match-winning hundred that knocked archrival Australia out of the 2017 Champions Trophy. Chasing a challenging 278 in damp conditions, England was reduced to 35 for three before Stokes led the host’s recovery with skipper Eoin Morgan with a 189-run stand for the fourth wicket.
After weathering a probing passage of new-ball swing bowling, Stokes brought up a 39-ball fifty before reaching the three-figure mark off 108 balls with a four through covers off Adam Zampa. With England cruising at 240 for four in 40.2 overs, rain intervened but Stokes’ well-paced knock had ensured that the host was comfortably 40 runs ahead of the D/L method-determined par score. This was Stokes’ second hundred in three ODI innings and also his last to date.
Stokes sinks India with deluge of sixes
March 26, 2021 vs India: 99(52)
In a scorching run-chase against India in Pune, Stokes smashed an astounding 52-ball 99, which included 10 sixes – the third most by an Englishman in an ODI innings – as England overhauled a mammoth target of 337 with 39 balls to spare. He fell short of his fourth century in the format by one run as he gloved a short ball from Bhuvneshwar Kumar to Rishabh Pant behind the stumps but had put England well on course for a historic win.
After openers Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow combined for a 110-run opening stand in just 16.3 overs, Stokes paired with the latter for a 175-run stand off 113 balls for the second wicket to put the visitor on top. After racing to a 40-ball fifty, Stokes unleashed carnage on the Indian bowlers as he struck the next 49 runs in just 11 balls, including six sixes and two fours. The six-wicket drubbing of India helped England level the series 1-1 despite the absence of skipper Eoin Morgan, who missed the second ODI due to a hand injury.
Stokes scripts lone English win on 2013-14 trip Down Under
January 24, 2014 vs Australia: 70(84) & 4/38
During the 2013-14 trip Down Under, Ben Stokes’ clinical all-round performance at Perth gave England its solitary win in 13 international matches played on the tour. Slotted in at number three only for the second time in his ODI career, Stokes scored an 84-ball 70 as England posted a match-winning 316 for eight. He reached his maiden ODI fifty off 58 balls with a six over long-on off Glenn Maxwell.
Stokes eventually top-edged a slower one by James Faulker to wicketkeeper Matthew Wade but redeemed himself later by dismissing the latter for his third wicket and followed it up with a sendoff that cost the England all-rounder 15 percent of his match fee. He also took the wickets of stand-in skipper George Bailey, Maxwell and Mitchell Johson to end with figures of four for 38 and set up England’s 57-run win.
At the same WACA Ground earlier on the tour, Stokes had struck his maiden Test hundred, albeit in a losing cause. While Stokes’ all-round heroics in the fourth ODI was the silver lining to England’s otherwise forgettable tour, the visitor lost the fifth ODI by five runs before being swept 3-0 in the T2OI series.