safari staff
18 Jul 2022 | 11:43 AM

Ben Stokes announces retirement from ODIs

The England all-rounder will play his final match against South Africa on Tuesday (July 19)

England all-rounder Ben Stokes has announced his retirement from One-Day Internationals (ODI). The first ODI between England and South Africa in Durham will be his final game in the 50-over format for England.

Taking to social media to make the announcement, Stokes said that playing three formats simultaneously is unsustainable for him but has vowed to give it his all in Tests and T20Is. 

"I will play my last game for England in ODI cricket on Tuesday in Durham. I have decided to retire from this format. This has been an incredibly tough decision to make. I have loved every minute of playing with my mates for England. We have had an incredible journey on the way," Stokes wrote on social media.

"As hard as a decision as this was to come to, it’s not as hard dealing with the fact I can’t give my teammates 100% of myself in this format anymore. The England shirt deserves nothing less from anyone who wears it.

"Three formats are just unsustainable for me now. Not only do I feel that my body is letting me down because of the schedule and what is expected of us, but I also feel that I am taking the place of another player who can give Jos and the rest of the team their all. It’s time for someone else to progress as a cricketer and make incredible memories like I have over the past 11 years.

"I will give everything I have to Test cricket, and now, with this decision, I feel I can also give my total commitment to the T20 format. I would like to wish Jos Buttler, Matthew Mott, the players and the support staff every success going forward. We have made great strides in white-ball cricket over the past seven years, and the future looks bright.

"I have loved all 104 games I have played so far, I’ve got one more, and it feels amazing to be playing my last game at my home ground in Durham.

"As always, the England fans have always been there for me and will continue to be there. You’re the best fans in the world. I hope we can win on Tuesday and set the series up nicely against South Africa."

Stokes has scored 2,919 runs for England, which includes his player of the match-winning performance in the World Cup final at Lord's, which handed his country its first-ever title. With the ball, he accounted for 74 wickets.

He led England in the format due to last summer's 3-0 whitewash of Pakitan at home after a Covid outbreak in the camp.

England director of cricket Rob Key has praised Stokes for his selfless decision.

“I know this must have been a tough decision, but I completely understand why he has reached this conclusion," Key said in a statement.

“I’m sure that when we look back on Ben’s career and see this as one of the reasons he will play 120-plus Tests and help England in T20 matches and World Cups for many years to come.

“It is a typically selfless decision that will benefit England long-term.”

Stokes was recently appointed England's Test captain following Joe Root's sacking. In his first series in charge, he led England to a 3-0 whitewash over New Zealand at home, along with newly-appointed Test coach Brendon McCullum. 

They were praised for their aggressive approach in the format, chasing targets of over 270 in all three Tests. Stokes could return to action for the T20I series against South Africa, starting July 27 followed by the Test series, where he will lead England once again. 

Having missed a huge chunk of last season due to injuries, Stokes missed the T20 World Cup in the UAE as well, but could play a huge part in the mega event slated to be played in October-November this year. 

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