BEN STOKES is “honoured, privileged and excited” to be the new England Test cricket captain.
The ECB confirmed the appointment this morning.
Ben Stokes is the 81st England Test cricket captain as he replaces Joe Root
Stokes, 30, replaces Joe Root who stepped down following a horror winter with series defeats in the Ashes in Australia and away to the West Indies.
The all-rounder sat down with new director of cricket Rob Key on Tuesday and agreed to take on the role as England’s 81st Test skipper.
Stokes said: “I am honoured to be given the chance to lead the England Test team.
“This is a real privilege, and I’m excited about getting started this summer.
“I want to thank Joe for everything he has done for English Cricket and for always being a great ambassador for the sport all across the world.
“He has been a massive part of my development as a leader in the dressing room, and he will continue to be a key ally for me in this role.”
Key added: “I had no hesitation in offering the role of Test captain to Ben.
“He epitomises the mentality and approach we want to take this team forward into the next era of red-ball cricket.
“I am delighted that he has accepted, and he is ready for the added responsibility and the honour. He thoroughly deserves the opportunity.”
Stokes made his Test debut in December 2013 and has 79 appearances in the long format of the game.
He was named vice-captain in February 2017 and stood in as captain when Root was absent for the birth of his second child in the summer of 2020.
The Durham star – one of the best all-rounders in world cricket – currently has 5,061 Test runs at an average of 35.89 and has taken 174 wickets with the ball.
Stokes will lead his team as permanent skipper for the first time when England take on New Zealand at Lord’s on June 2.
The squad must be picked by May 26.
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And it is expected the new captain will push to bring James Anderson, 39, and Stuart Broad, 35, back in following their Caribbean snub.
The legendary pace bowlers have an astonishing 1,177 Test wickets between them for England.
Root stepped down as skipper earlier in April following the tour to the West Indies.
The ten-wicket mauling in the final Test put England bottom of the World Test Championship table.
Three weeks later, Root announced his resignation with a record of just one win in his last 17 games.
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Elsewhere, the ECB have resorted to advertising online for England head coaches.
Separate ads for the Test and limited-over roles were posted on job hiring platform Applied on Saturday.