Stokes Calls England Win the Greatest

Hyderabad: England captain Ben Stokes termed the win over India in the first Test as their greatest victory here on Sunday.

“Since I’ve taken the captaincy on, we have been part of some amazing games over the last two years and had some incredible victories. But it’s 100 per cent our greatest victory,” he said.

The 32-year-old allrounder said that he observed the Indian approach in the field to defeat the hosts. “To be honest, this is my first time as a captain coming to India. I watch a lot of cricket and I’m a keen observer. I just love to watch the game. I’ve watched how India operates in the field and how Rohit set the field when they bowled. I see how the Indian spinners bowl. I analyse because we wanted to get India knocked over to win this match,” Stokes said.

He also heaped praises on Tom Hartley and Ollie Pope. “Tom came into the squad for the first time, he’s heard a lot and has a lot of confidence. I was willing to give him a long spell regardless of what happened,” Stokes said.

“Seen some special innings from Popey (Pope), but the whole innings on a difficult wicket, for me that’s the greatest by an Englishman on the sub-continent. The most important thing is to prove an individual’s success in the outcome for the team. Ollie achieved that this week,” he said.

Pope, who was named Player Of The Match, credited his match winning performance to head coach Brendon McCullum. “From my batting point of view I just go by my mind. In the past, I needed somebody to give me a couple of knocks to bring my best. I think the credit goes to Baz (Brendon McCullum),” he said.

“I have been batting for two-three months now. I am feeling really good. For me getting my head around and putting a big innings together, to come here to India and put in a winning performance, it’s head and shoulders above the rest,” said Pope, who returned after a shoulder injury.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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